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Click on a thumbnail picture below to see the full size version. 14 Entries.
Thursday, March 2 View Page
First Entry of the year - Yahoo! Tested germination of potential main plant a 1389McCrackinxself'15 that produced a beautiful orange 454 lb fruit. put up 4 - first 2 germinated yesterday (4 days) and the other 2 have split the seed
 
Thursday, March 2 View Page
the 454 from 1389McCracken14 grown 2015
 
Thursday, March 2 View Page
100% germination Muzletxself big heart-shaped solid tomato, not weighed but about 2 lbs
 
Thursday, March 2 View Page
Typical Muzlet tomato (seeds smuggled in from Sicily 2008 by John Muzlet)
 
Monday, April 10 View Page
Ain’t no prettier picture than that – 1000 sq ft of rototilled patch. Let the Season Begin !! Fall Prep: 3 – 4x8 trailer loads of mushroom soil topping with an additional trailer load piled in the middle for spring topping after rototill; 1-2” grass clippings; 4” maple leaf mulch. Fall Soil Test – pH – 7.5; exceeded recommended levels of phosphate, potash, Mag and Calcium Spring prep before rototill: 40 lbs of granular gypsum, 20 lbs 10-10-10 – forgot to send a spring soil test before adding this stuff and rototilling. Plan to get a disease test from Western Laboratories in Parma ID. After taking soil samples for disease test, will top off with the pile of mushroom soil.
 
Wednesday, April 12 View Page
First Team: 2624 Willemijns'16 +21%- 2145Mcmullen x 1872Willemijns 2048 Willemijns'16 +5% - 1861Cutrupi x 1872Willemijns (only going with 2 vines this year - 3 drove me and the family crazy.)
 
Wednesday, April 12 View Page
Second Team: 1st back up: 1795McCracken'16 - 2145McMillen'15x1625Gantner'13 2nd back up: 1389McCracken'14 - 1744Fulk'13 x 1882Bryson'11 3rd back up: 1218Snyder - 1744Fulk'13 x 2323 Meier 4th back up: 1495Snyder - 1463Hoelke x 1177Clementz (Orange) Grew the 1389McCracken 2015 and got a beautiful round 454 orange. also tried the 1218Snyder with poor results (my fault) Sent off sample for soil fungus test (pricey) P.S. Auction price I paid So Ohio GPGs for the 2624Willemijns available upon request - if my wife finds out, a 47yr marriage and future attempts at giant pumpkin growing probably finished.
 
Wednesday, April 12 View Page
Muzlet Heart Shaped Giant doing nicely. Several more under light. Goal: 5 lbs
 
Saturday, April 15 View Page
Final topping of mushroom soil and layout of irrigation. Stakes for hoop houses. Team 1 right back growing southeast, some extra room to extend patch if needed. Team 2 left forward. Took out that volunteer junk evergreen. A nuisance last year, too big and irregular to transplant – so it’s another sacrifice to the sport.
 
Sunday, April 16 View Page
Starting Team 2 tonight – Team 1 will be next weekend – spread the risk of a planting calamity or doing something systematically dumb. Seeds rubbed with peroxide (afraid to do the 5 min soak suggested by others), filed edges (see next photo) and put up in moist towel in sandwich bags for next 12 hours – put in incubator to keep warm.
 
Sunday, April 16 View Page
Filed edge of seed on right to facilitate swelling and splitting, just down to the line marking the interior seed cavity, careful not to damage root end.
 
Sunday, April 16 View Page
Wet paper towel sandwich bags Into cheapo greenhouse at 80 deg along with everybody else till morning when they go into pots – also warming in incubator. Very exciting. ----- Quandary for tomorrow morning – do I set the seeds to reside at 0 deg, 45 deg or 90 deg?? Just too many decisions here – how does ANYBODY get something to weigh in Sept ? !!.
 
Saturday, April 22 View Page
Quiet – outright boring – week waiting for Team 2 to sprout. 5 days of lookin’ at dirt. Worse than watching paint dry. And Halleluiah!, McCracken 1795 moved the dirt today! Couldn’t stand to not know what was going on in the other 2 pots and so scratched away the dirt down to the seeds, and both have germinated, included the $35 2048 Willemjns. Should see them above ground in a couple of days. Plan to plant Team I (2624 Willemjns; 1389 McCracken; 1218 Snyder) in 2 days after a 12 hour soak in tissue paper in plastic sandwich bag.
 
Sunday, April 23 View Page
So here we go today with Team 1 : 2624 Willemijns, 1495Snyder (Winner of the MidAtlanticPGA Howard Dill Award for the Most Beautifully Orange Specimen of the Year), and the 1218 Snyder out of the 1744Fulkx2323Meier. Edges filed and carefully placed in sandwich bags cuddled in warm wet paper towels. All auspicious representatives of the species. Holding and gazing upon the 2624, I appreciated that I am holding the container for a mixture of brand new DNA that has never been available on this planet over its entire 4 ½ billion-year history. Just think of that. The potential in a few grams of casement to produce the largest pumpkin ever grown on planet earth (no proof here) and maybe in the 13 billion-year history of the Milky Way. Whew – just too much to get my head around. Yeh, sometimes I just wax inordinately philosophic.
 

 

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