Five of the six giant-pumpkin seeds germinated over the week. I’m planting three outdoors and keeping the other two (as long as I can) as emergency backups.
The seedlings are planted at the far end of the patch, where the morning and early-afternoon sun shines most directly. After digging three holes and filling each with forty pounds of humus/manure, I mix in a handful of mycorrhiza (a beneficial fungus that increases the root system’s nutrient and water intake; it comes in granules) and gently remove the seedlings from their starter pots. Then I give them a drink of warm water and extreme blend powder (from Extreme Pumpkin Store) and hope they aren’t too shocked by the transplant.
As I wrote in an earlier post, by delaying my start-time by a few weeks this year, the transplant is occurring with warmer air and soil. This ought to reduce the stress and allow them to flourish more quickly. I keep the plants protected from chilly weather, hail, pests, and curious puppies by covering the planting area with a popup greenhouse, making sure to ventilate on hot, sunny days. The greenhouse will remain until the vines outgrow the space. By then I’ll have a makeshift fence to keep Bones from uninhibited access, though it’ll really be a matter of training him not to trample and eat the vines.