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Hello! I am growing pumpkins for the first time as my 5 year old son is so excited about having his own pumpkins for Halloween... Anyway, we live in Norway and the spring has been too cold and "long" that we first planted the seeds indoors, after a few weeks we had beautiful green plants growing and flowers started to bloom. But a couple of weeks ago we replanted them outside and they turned yellow and most of the leaves died. We gave them a chance and waited some days and now we see new leaves coming and even some new flower buttons. Still the plants are kind of weak and yellowish. They are sheltered from wind and rain and we chose the best sunny spot in the garden... but, what else can I do??? This are small pumpkins, not sure what kind. But any tip or advice about taking good care and growing pumpkins will be very much appreciated :-) (this photo is when our plants were looking so beautiful before transplanting outside)

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Pumpkins are quite easy to grow providing they are grown in moisture retentive soil, I grow mine outdoors on the compost heap.

The biggest piece of advice i can give is; do not let them dry out.

The only thing I see you have done wrong so far is protect them from rain.

As I said I grow mine outdoors in full sun and subject to the weather I rarely have to water them as the growing medium and rain sustains them.

Having said that if we get a dry spell I water them, so really you just play the weather.

The flowers in your picture are "male flowers" which usually appear first.

Female flower ( these have a mini pumpkin behind the petals) come later and may need to be manually pollinated particularly in cooler weather if there are no pollinators (bees) around.

If in doubt; manually pollinate!

This link will show you how I grow mine and in the related Links you will find a slide show on how to manually pollinate.

I think once you have read the article all will become quite clear.

In the event that you feel you need to learn more get back to us....Tg.

7 Jun, 2012


It's even been too cold here in France to get pumpkins and squashes going properly yet, so don't be depressed about how yours are doing in Norway!
If your plants are really badly yellowed and weak, it's even worth starting more now as they are so quick from seed, the later ones may catch up and overtake the earlier ones. As said above, the answer to good strong plants is lots of compost worked into the soil, and keeping the crowns of the plants a bit proud of the soil so they don't rot.
If you want enormous pumpkins for Hallowe'en, you should pick off most of the fruit except for two or three, or you can just let the plants ramble and have a lot more to eat.

8 Jun, 2012


Did you plant them out without hardening the off first? This cold weather is awful isn't it?

8 Jun, 2012


Wonderful!! Thank you so much for your answers. I found them very helpful!! Our garden is so small, I would love to have a little compost, but there is no room for it. Anyway I will ask around and try to get or buy some. I still have the plants a bit protected from the rain because it has been raining like nails lately! The rain is so hard and sharp I'm worried it will destroy the tender leaves.
I would love to know more about manually pollinating, i'll check the links. Usually bees was a problem for us to eat outside at the terrace but the last two years have been less and less bees.
I'll post some photos of the plants and how they look today. I had been planting new seeds anyway! ;-)

Thank you again!!

10 Jun, 2012

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