Do Pumpkins Grow Back Every Year?

Pumpkins are popular vegetables in the garden. They are generally easy to grow and can grow on different soils with proper care. While many think of pumpkins as orange squashes, they have different colors, like red, blue, pink, and white.

Growing pumpkins isn’t something of a big deal, as these plants can literally grow anywhere, even over the garden frame. However, one important question is, ‘do pumpkins grow back every year?’ Well, the answer is NO.

Only perennials grow back every year. Pumpkins are annual crops, completing their life cycle within a year. This means you can only harvest once from a pumpkin plant before disposing of it.

Pumpkins flourish during the summer and are quite sensitive to frost due to their tender nature. This plant requires warm weather and soil for the seeds to germinate properly. As a result, they grow much faster during summer or spring.

How Long Does It Take for Pumpkins to Grow?

There are over 100 pumpkin varieties, and knowing the time it takes to grow may depend on the species. Different pumpkin species grow at different rates. Pumpkin seeds don’t take long to germinate. You begin seeing the seeds sprout from the soil in as little as 10 days.

Generally, pumpkins require anywhere from 85 to 130 days to attain full maturity. Faster maturing ones can be ready for harvest within 90 days, while others may take up to 120 days before harvest. Also, smaller varieties reach maturity faster than larger ones.

Furthermore, the pollination process is essential for results. After 8 weeks of planting, your pumpkin plant should begin to blossom, and in one more week, you should notice the pumpkin forming. After pollination, the pumpkin takes around 50 days to fully mature. It gets larger, and the color starts changing. Once it’s ripe for harvest, the stems wither, indicating it’s time for harvest.

How to Grow Pumpkins Plant

A pumpkin on the ground with a pumpkin flower

Pumpkins require warm weather and protection from cold winds. They are usually planted on hills or raised rows. Properly growing your pumpkins requires some steps. Let’s review them.

  1. Know the proper time to plant pumpkins

Pumpkins love warm soil. This means you need to plant them when there are no frosts. If you love a fall harvest, prepare to plant in the late spring or early summer.

  1. Prepare the planting spot

Avoid planting the pumpkin seeds under a shade. Find a spot with enough sunlight and good space. Also, choose a spot that quickly absorbs water. In addition, before planting, you can fill the area with composts to yield better outputs.

  1. Plant the seeds in raised and well-spaced rows

Raised rows or hills are ideal for planting pumpkin seeds. Raise a mound of soil and allow for good spacing between each row. Afterward, plant the seeds about 1 to 2 inches deep into the hill. The raised rows or hills enhance soil drainage and make the sun heat the soil better, thus quickening growth.

  1. Add compost

Composting helps to nourish the pumpkin seeds. If the soil isn’t composted earlier, you can add some layers of compost around the areas where you planted the seeds.

  1. Water the plants

Watering the pumpkin plant is essential to keep the soil moist. Although pumpkins shouldn’t be watered daily, they require sufficient watering every 2-3 days. Ensure you water anytime the soil seems dry rather than watering every time. 

While watering, avoid the pumpkin leaves to prevent powdery mildew (a fungus) from growing. In addition, watering in the morning is better as this allows time for the sun to dry any water that falls on the leaves.

  1. Fertilization, weeding, and pest control

Adding fertilizer to the plant stimulates healthy growth. Also, ensure you clear weeds that may grow around the plant area. Leaving too many weeds can reduce the number of nutrients your pumpkin needs to thrive. Also, use an organic pesticide to control pests around the pumpkin plant.

  1. Pumpkin harvest

Ensure you harvest before a heavy frost to prevent spoilage of the pumpkin. When it’s time to harvest, the pumpkins should be hard, and the stems and vines will start to wither. By this time, you already know your pumpkin’s ripe for harvest. Always harvest your pumpkins with the stem, so they can last longer, and avoid harvesting soft pumpkins. Soft pumpkins aren’t ripe, and when harvested prematurely, they quickly spoil.

Do Pumpkins Need Lots of Water?

Typically, pumpkins prefer moist soil, not overly dry or wet ground. They are mainly made up of water and, as such, need a lot of water to grow. Around 1 to 2 inches of water per week is sufficient for pumpkins to grow properly.

As pumpkins grow, their water needs may increase. However, the roots also grow deeper, causing the plant to reach more depths for water. Every 2 to 3 days is okay to water the pumpkin plant, as this maintains a watering balance for the plant.

Also, avoid over-watering the plant, as it can cause over-drowning for the roots. This leads to a decrease in oxygen, which in no time causes the roots to rot, and eventually, the plant dies.

Furthermore, when the soil gets too dry, it indicates your pumpkin needs water. Increase the watering rate once the temperatures get above 35°C. In sweltering conditions, you may want to water the plant every 1 or 2 days. This will help protect the pumpkin plant from heat stress. Also, minimize the watering to protect your plant if there’s rain.

During the hottest time of the day, pumpkin leaves wilt even with sufficient water. However, you should keep an eye out for wilting leaves after the temperature subsides, as this signifies insufficient water. Plus, it can also be a sign of a waterlogged root. Therefore, you should check the moisture level to confirm if there’s enough water supply.

How Many Pumpkins per Plant?

After planting and watching your pumpkin plants germinate from seedlings to full-grown plants, it’s normal to wonder about the harvest quantity.

The number of pumpkins per plant depends on several factors ranging from the pumpkin species to the growing conditions. For example, giant pumpkins don’t produce as much as the smaller ones.

Nonetheless, pumpkin plants produce two to five pumpkins on average. Smaller species like Jack B weigh around 3 to 6 pounds and can give you up to 12 pumpkins per plant. Medium-sized species like Lumina weigh between 7 to 20 pounds and can produce about 3 to 6 pumpkins per plant. Meanwhile, larger pumpkin breeds like the Kratos Hybrid produce only 1 or 2 for each plant and weigh between 20 to 30 pounds.

Bottom Line

Growing pumpkins can be interesting. They’re not expensive to grow and come at almost no cost. Moreso, watching your pumpkins grow from seedlings to mature pumpkins can bring some sense of fulfillment.

However, as they grow, you’ll need to pay close attention to your pumpkin plants. Ensure you weed the plant area regularly and constantly check for pest infestation. Beetles, vine borers, snails, and aphids are some common pests of pumpkins.

Finally, after harvesting your pumpkins, store them in a cool and dry area to prolong their shelf life. Humid and hot conditions shorten the life span of a pumpkin. In addition, avoid storing them in refrigerators as humid conditions in the fridge are often too high for the pumpkin. If properly stored, pumpkins can last between 2 to 3 months.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top