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Click on a thumbnail picture below to see the full size version. 98 Entries.
Thursday, February 20 View Page
Last year after harvest I dug in some peat & perlite and covered the whole plot with weed control membrane over winter to keep the moisture in and weeds out. Soil analysis as of now shows a a small amount of Mo and B are required, which is easily done. Other than that the pH is looking great and the excess OM should break down over time to a reasonable level.
Wednesday, March 25 View Page
Seed selection for this year, all 4 will be sown but only 2 will be taken on, I'll grow one in the polytunnel and Oliver will grow the other outdoors. We have a 2469 Daletas, 2136 Brandt, 2027 Haist & 1984 Barron. I'm really happy with these seeds let's hope something good happens this year... sowing date is set for April 11, the next couple of weeks I'll finish things off on Oliver's plot and get things ready in the polytunnel.
Thursday, April 2 View Page
Polytunnel interior as of today with Biovin & humic added, tilled and levelled before watering in.
Saturday, April 4 View Page
Last summer it got way too hot in the tunnel even with the doors open and sides rolled up, so I've installed a couple of solar powered extraction fans, one at each end. Because they're solar powered they only function when the sun shines ie when it gets hot. Today was sunny and they worked a treat. It's possible I might need to add a couple more, we'll see how it goes in the coming months.
Friday, April 10 View Page
Here we go - our 4 seeds for this year soaking for a few hours in plain water at 28C adjusted to pH 6.2
Sunday, April 12 View Page
...then in damp tissue paper at 28-29C until germination...
Sunday, April 12 View Page
...which has happened in just over 24 hours for 3 of the 4 seeds! With just the Brandt to go, this germination method is by far the fastest I've come across.
Tuesday, April 14 View Page
The 1984 Barron 4 days since initial seed soak. This and the Daletas are on a par. No more heat now, they're under the T5 at room temp, plain water pH 6.0.
Thursday, April 16 View Page
All OK 5 days after germination but for the Brandt seed which shows no sign of life so far, but I'll keep trying for another few days. Temp goes up to 25C during the day due to the lights but the heat mat means no less than 20 even at night.
Friday, April 17 View Page
I'm trying out airpots for the first time and today, at the time of transplant from 1l to 5l pots, you can see the effect they have, with no coiling of the roots you'd normally see around the sides of a standard plastic pot. All 3 plants now under 2xT5s and the temp set to 20C with some ventilation to keep the air temp about the same as it was getting a bit high under the lights.
Friday, April 17 View Page
Less than a week after the initial seed soak, the first true leaf has made an appearance. I must be doing something right?! This is the 2469 Delatas, which is my main hope for this year.
Saturday, April 18 View Page
I spent most of the afternoon laying down a new dripline system, here it is half finished. I'll complete it when I know which side the pumpkin will form as there's no point laying pipe if the pumpkin's going to squash it. Each of the white PVC feed pipes running left to right is gravity fed by a 1000 litre water tank set up 6ft off the ground just outside. Drip line is fed out adjacent to the pipes and they run towards the edges of the plot. The idea is that the pumpkin will be planted at the far left corner, and I'll train the main vine to grow from one corner to the other, from left to right and in between the two feed pipes. There won't be much space for the first few secondaries so they will be terminated early. But there will be a lot of space for the secondaries that'll appear after about 8 feet from the stump. These are the secondaries that will host the leaves that will be most responsible for providing sugars for pumpkin growth ie diamond pattern. So the theory goes anyway, fingers crossed.
Sunday, April 19 View Page
All 3 plants doing fine under the T5s, very healthy looking. The main leaves on each are already growing about an inch a day.
Monday, April 20 View Page
Strike that - make it 2 inches a day. This is the Daletas storming ahead. I think these plants may well be planted out this weekend, ahead of schedule. The weather is forecast to be sunny all week so from tomorrow I'll start hardening them off outside.
Wednesday, April 22 View Page
This will be their second day outside hardening off, I was going to wait until the weekend before planting out but I'll probably do it tomorrow as I don't want to induce pot stress. The main concern is low nighttime temps. Indoors it's easy to control and they've been kept at a minimum 18C, but outdoors, with no electricity, it will go into the low single figures, which is bound to slow metabolism & growth.
Thursday, April 23 View Page
This is the 2469 Daletas about to be planted out in the polytunnel this morning. The airpots have done a good job, plenty of roots, with no coiling.
Thursday, April 23 View Page
Job done, planted at an angle with Azos, Holland's myco and Life-Cycle soil conditioner, watered in with rain water adjusted to pH 6.0 with nitric acid. It'll be sunny today so the doors and sides will be open all day, and the solar fans working too to try and keep a temperature somewhere in the 20s. Last night the temp went down to 5C so this evening I will have to see what I can do about keeping the plant warm.
Friday, April 24 View Page
The Daletas settling in 24 hours later, everything OK. Last night's low was 9C which isn't too bad. Soil temp is 15C. Another sunny day is due today, though the air is still cold.
Friday, April 24 View Page
And here's Oliver's 2027 Haist in a polycarbonate cloche outside. He's planted it at one end of the patch, with the 1984 Barron at the other end. He really wants to beat his PB and get over 300lb this year and I'll do what I can to help him - but he calls the shots!
Saturday, April 25 View Page
Another sunny day today although rain is forecast for the rest of the week. Light feed pH 6.0 EC 1.0.
Monday, April 27 View Page
Not a great deal of change but that's to be expected, just slow steady growth both above and below ground now, until vining starts.
Wednesday, April 29 View Page
Steady progress with the Daletas, the days are warm inside despite the bad weather.
Wednesday, April 29 View Page
Not such good news for Oliver - this is the Heist with a snapped stem - game over. My fault for not securing the cloche properly during the bad weather we've been having. Lucky for me Oliver's very forgiving, and he still has the Barron which is doing OK. I've started a 1949 Paton as back up just in case the worst happens for either of us.
Sunday, May 3 View Page
Oliver's Barron which being outside is much slower than the Daletas, we gave it a foliar shot of Mn & other metal ions to pre-empt pale leaves due to the alkaline soil we have
Sunday, May 3 View Page
Pic for previous post. If anyone knows a way of editing diary entries shoot me an email :)
Sunday, May 3 View Page
Update on the indoor Daletas which looks to be doing OK. This also got some foliar TE to prevent leaf yellowing.
Tuesday, May 5 View Page
A quick view of the interior showing the steps taken to insulate overnight. Not only is there the protection of the polytunnel itself, but the plant also has twin wall polycarbonate sheeting and a double layer of bubble wrap to guard against cold, which is forecast to go down to 3C tonight. Last night we had similar, and there was a 4 difference between inside and out. I have to get back early in the morning to unwrap so the plant doesn't bake, it heats up very quickly once the sun's out.
Wednesday, May 6 View Page
The cloche worked as expected last night and will be in place again tonight as the forecast is the same. Interior daytime temps have been in the mid to late 20s, soil temp is 15C, but the light levels inside are not as high as I'd like, just 400 lumen compared to 900 outside in bright sunshine at 5pm. I will probably have to change the polythene sheeting on the polytunnel at the end of the season. Both the Daletas and Barron got an ammonium nitrate feed EC 1.2 pH 6.0 which hopefully will give explosive results ;)
Thursday, May 7 View Page
As a comparison between this year and last year, we're way ahead, with 4 main leaves instead of 3 at the same 25 day period since germination. I'm not sure exactly why, probably a combination of technique, weather and genetics as always, all of which I think have been better than last year.
Thursday, May 7 View Page
Last night the temp was forecast to go as low as 3C - and where we are it often goes lower than forecast - so I set up a butane gas heater to prevent risk of frost damage. As it happens it went down to 7C inside the tunnel, and 11 inside the cloche where the heat was being blown in by a fan. Inside the CO2 level went up as expected but not too much, from circa 500ppm ambient to 1200ppm. I'd like to have that level of CO2 during the daytime when it's needed oh well.
Monday, May 11 View Page
The Daletas this morning after another cold night. I'm going to install a different gas heater to try and up the night temps, I really don't want them in single figures if I can help it. Higher temp at night when respiration takes place = faster & more efficient metabolism = better growth, it's as simple as that!
Wednesday, May 13 View Page
New heating setup as of last night that has worked a treat providing an overnight temp in the early 20s despite low single figures outside. Instead of a simple propane (not butane, my error) frost protector, there's now a proper propane heater installed, with a fan blowing the heat directly into the cloche where the plant is. I was concerned that it might be too warm and dry the plant out, or even cook it such was the heat it gave off, but I checked it through the evening and this morning everything was fine and looking good. I also made sure there was enough ventilation to prevent CO buildup and ensure the CO2 levels didn't get too high, this morning the CO2 was 1300ppm which is fine.
Wednesday, May 13 View Page
Quick pic as of this morning. For veg growth this year I'll be using OminA, Blackjak humic, Grow Genius silicic acid, Hortiphite phosphite, Solufeed Vigil as well as Holland's mcyo, Azos, TNC bacteria and the usual TE chelates, yucca, fulvic etc. Fruit growth will be different but more of that later when the time comes.
Wednesday, May 13 View Page
Correct pic for previous post ;) This is a great site but it really would be a good thing if we could edit diary entries...!
Thursday, May 14 View Page
A sharp frost last night has damaged Oliver's plant despite a triple layer of fleece, though we think it will be OK as time goes on. Meanwhile in the tunnel it didn't go below 17C, and the start of the main vine becomes even more prominent.
Saturday, May 16 View Page
Another cold night but I managed to maintain a minimum of 16C inside which is great. As such we have no issues and the main vine will probably touch down next week.
Sunday, May 17 View Page
Or should I say touch down today - Daletas main vine looking good but some prompting is needed to get it growing in the right direction. Things should start to take off this week, the growth rate has noticeably increased already and the weather forecast is sunny and warm.
Tuesday, May 19 View Page
Another sunny day today means problems with indoor heat. I had big problems with overheating and desiccation last year so I've made some improvements this year. So not only are the main doors fully open, sides fully vented and interior fans on, but this year the solar extraction fans are on and maxed out, I've changed direction of the floor fans so colder, outside air blows IN, but most effective of all is the large-scale overhead misting spray, which takes the air temp and leaf temp down by several degrees in the space of just a few minutes. I'm still testing it so I know how often to use it, so I can set a timer. So instead of temps of well over 30C, I've got it down to just 22-24 which is just about right.
Saturday, May 23 View Page
The Daletas this morning about 6ft in length. Side vines are making an appearance and growing fast so the node burying will start soon. It's been sunny but not too hot all week, and more of the same is forecast, ideal weather really.
Tuesday, May 26 View Page
Oliver spotted this tiny first female yesterday; a progress marker about 7 feet out
Tuesday, May 26 View Page
The Daletas making gains of 4-6" a day now. Sunny weather means I'm watering every morning by hand, and varying the EC & pH which I'm keeping below 1.7 and 6.8 respectively. Now it's warm I won't add any additional ammonium apart from what's already in the Vigil feed, and I'll introduce calcium nitrate and magnesium nitrate instead.
Saturday, May 30 View Page
It's been sunny all week and quite a challenge to keep the temps down. Broadly we want 20 and 28C during the day, but it can easily go above that. Too high and stomata close and photosynthesis shuts down. Too low and metabolism slows right down. The misting system gets air and leaf temps down very quickly, here we can see the leaf temp just under 20C which is fine.
Monday, June 1 View Page
The Daletas this morning at about 9-10 ft long. Last night I applied Paton pots along the main vine and some secondaries, a bit late but thanks to the slow post we're experiencing due to the pandemic, the myco only just arrived from the US. I also terminated the first couple of secondaries. It felt weird and wrong doing that, seeing as they're usually the longest and most robust vines on the plant, but I'm sticking to the plan.
Thursday, June 4 View Page
The Daletas this morning at 12ft with a female at the tip, another 3-4ft more and I'm hoping another female will appear. The bright sunshine we've been having a lot of recently has gone for the foreseeable future, so growth might slow down a bit now. The first few vines have been chopped after just 2 or 3 leaves, and the other vines are being trained to go backwards at an obtuse angle, so that when the pumpkin grows they won't get in the way. I don't want to have to remove any vines near the pumpkin at all if I can help it.
Monday, June 8 View Page
Growth has slowed due to the cloudy and cooler weather but we're still on target to pollinate, possibly next week, as there's a female present at the end of the main vine which should be at about 15ft when the nodes lengthen out. The plant is looking narrow and skinny due to the early pruning of the first few secondaries but as time goes on the whole area will fill out.
Friday, June 12 View Page
Everything is resting on this little thing. Cloudy & cool weather is slowing things down otherwise all ok.
Saturday, June 13 View Page
Paton pots seem to be doing OK using a mix of BAC Lava Soil, Life-Cycle soil amendment & vermiculite along with Holland's Biogrow Endo Plus myco + Clonex rooting hormone gel. Adjusting from leaf growth to flowering, I've introduced Canna Bio Vega instead of the hardcore fertiliser salts, and with plenty of tea made from TNC Bactorr. The plant is looking great and we're in a much better place than the same time last year.
Wednesday, June 17 View Page
All looking good with the main vine at about 17ft now. Under the canopy I've spread some chicken manure pellets and covered them with a straw mulch. As the manure breaks down, it gives off CO2. I'll do a reading in a couple of weeks to see if it's working. The mulch will inhibit weeds & prevent water loss, which should encourage roots to come closer to the surface. There will be a loss of nitrogen but that's remedied with fertiliser. I read about this technique in a scientific journal somewhere and it appeared to be very effective. I wish I'd bookmarked it as I just can't remember where!
Wednesday, June 17 View Page
It's 5am and the female at 16ft is beginning to open.
Wednesday, June 17 View Page
Now covered with some breathable shade cloth to prevent insects pollinating. I've also shaded the area and put a tray of cold water nearby with a fan to create a low temp microclimate. Hopefully this will make things cool enough for a successful pollination today.
Wednesday, June 17 View Page
Here we are a few hours later, at 25C it's a bit warmer than I'd like but I don't think there's anything I can do about it that I haven't done already. It looks like 6 lobes, the ones on the right more separated than those on the left. If it takes it will be interesting see if the fruit shape bears any similarity in the coming months.
Wednesday, June 17 View Page
One of the best things about this hobby is the camaraderie between growers, including those on different continents with whom I chat by email, and who I will probably never meet. In the truest spirit of the word, what more can be said about the generosity of Stuart & Ian Paton, who at their own expense sent an overnight express package with some 1875 Mendi male flowers with which I pollinated the 2469 Daletas today. What more can I say than a huge big Thank You!!!
Saturday, June 20 View Page
3 days later and the ovary has swollen but it's way too early to tell if fertilisation has occurred. Although it's in a great position, there's another female a couple more feet along the main vine that will probably open in a day or two. I'll self-pollinate that one as a back up.
Monday, June 22 View Page
This morning with a sunny week ahead. The flower is in the centre near the white pad on the right which is raising the vine somewhat. Drip irrigation has started with Solufeed Fleury EC 1.3 - 1.5 using Agroacid to adjust pH to 6.8 with the aim of using 100-150 litres a day depending on how things are looking. I'd like a moisture probe for the soil but I haven't found anything appropriate yet. This morning the backup flower was selfed, hidden under the netting behind the post on the left.
Thursday, June 25 View Page
Hi temps yesterday and the risk of leaf scorch has brought out the protective fleece. Just a couple of square inches on one leaf was affected, much less than last year. The overhead misting works wonders to cool the air and the leaves, we have it on for 2 mins once an hour every hour.
Saturday, June 27 View Page
The plant is looking great, you can see the first pollination on the right and the backup a few feet further on the main on the left.
Saturday, June 27 View Page
That being said, I'm not sure if the first pollination has worked, at DAP 10 the fruit is about half the size of the same stage last year. Not a massive problem as we have a back up, but a bit of a nuisance in that I'd trained everything around it for optimal positioning; not so for the backup.
Saturday, June 27 View Page
Tissue analysis from leaf past the fruit. The Ca and B are probably low because the fruit is taking it all; there's no shortage of Ca in our chalky soil, which is also the reason why the the Mn is low. I'll start using InCa again this week to up the Ca intake while the Mn & B can be applied through spray/irrigation.
Sunday, June 28 View Page
Both fruits side by side, the one on the left is DAP 10 and on the right is DAP 5. The left one has furrows and ridges, and is the just about same size as the right, despite being twice the age. The fruit on the right is smooth and with a thicker stem. So it looks like the left fruit is aborting... so the right one is the one we'll go with.
Tuesday, June 30 View Page
Swollen and looking much more promising 7 DAP
Wednesday, July 1 View Page
It'll get a bit crowded on the left side but I will try and keep as many vines close to the pumpkin as I can, perhaps take the odd leaf out rather than a whole vine to avoid congestion and stagnant air.
Wednesday, July 1 View Page
Bees love pumpkin flowers.
Thursday, July 2 View Page
This is DAP 10 and looking promising. The plant is getting 100-150 litres a day EC 1.3 pH 6.8-7.0 and the tunnel is about 70% full. We just need some sunshine and away we go.
Thursday, July 2 View Page
This is the current plan given the location of the pumpkin on the main. It's not exactly how it was planned so I've had to accommodate. There will probably be some vines chopped due to congestion but I don't think the actual number of vines really matters; what really matters is that the vines in the vicinity of the fruit have maximum canopy area to capture light, and minimum distance for the sugars to travel to the fruit.
Saturday, July 4 View Page
Today with the help of Nic & Rob we managed to slide the large growing board in place under the pumpkin. It's always a tricky manoeuvre but I think we managed ok. Let's hope for some decent weather now. This is DAP 12.
Sunday, July 5 View Page
The main vine was terminated a few days ago at about 28ft, the secondaries will probably all have to be terminated within the next couple of weeks, maybe less. I'll try and leave a few open as a sink but the tunnel is about 500 sq ft and some of that space is needed for the pumpkin + access, and I'm rapidly running out of room. I applied some Prestop today as a preventative measure against Pythium which may otherwise take hold in a few weeks now that the water application will increase.
Tuesday, July 7 View Page
For a little experiment I did a couple of tissue tests to compare young leaves either side of the fruit. The results suggest that the pumpkin is absorbing potassium, calcium, iron, manganese and boron in much larger amounts than the other elements. This isn't a proper experiment with controls etc, but it does give food for thought. If anything it shows that I need to get more calcium and boron into the plant, not easy as both are quite immobile in plant tissue. I will increase foliar InCa application to twice a week, up the Omina levels in the water tanks and add extra Mn, B and a Ca chelate to the weekly trace element foliar sprays that I've been doing.
Tuesday, July 7 View Page
This is DAP 15. We're still in need of a decent sunny spell, we haven't had one to speak of in several weeks now.
Thursday, July 9 View Page
This is DAP 17 and the first measuring of the year gives an estimated 34lb, which is about 5lb less than the same dap last year. I can only blame the cold rainy weather! But it looks like it will improve from tomorrow. Nic helped me spread some sand this afternoon. We're all set for things to take off.
Sunday, July 12 View Page
DAP 20 is 52lb which is 17lb less than the same stage last year so I'm hoping for some improvement soon. Other than that things look good, healthy plant etc although there is a deep line on the top of the pumpkin as it grew into the plastic chair overnight. The tunnel is 90% full so most secondaries will be terminated this week. Yesterday we installed a thermostat so that the misting system comes on automatically at 25C rather than on a timer. It works a treat. Thanks Ron!
Sunday, July 12 View Page
Pic for above entry
Friday, July 17 View Page
I'm not sure how this one will look in the end but it appears to be growing muscles. This is DAP 25 and 119lb. We had some concerns this week when it looked like I'd been overwatering, but thanks to some solid advice from the Patons we have a plan laid out to get past it. Other than that the tunnel is now 95% full, all but one secondaries terminated, all Paton pots are down. The watering/feed is set to auto once a day at 8am, the mister is set to come on at 25C, so we're all set for a week's holiday starting tomorrow.
Saturday, July 25 View Page
Back from hols via the allotment to check up on things. The pumpkin is taping 356lb at DAP 33 which is 1% more than the same stage last year which is fine with me. Despite terminating 99% of vines the plant is pushing and looking to burst out of the tunnel. I don't know how much weight will be lost having just 450 sq ft instead of 600 or more and it's bound to make a difference though there's nothing I can do about it. Other than that it's looks to be in great shape as we approach August. This is the time of year disease and pest problems start to take hold so this week I will think about what preemptive measures we need to take.
Wednesday, July 29 View Page
A quick view on top. No complaints here.
Wednesday, July 29 View Page
And below. Next year I'll use bigger pots as some of them tend to tumble over as the vine extends, I'll also try and dig a shallow trench too ahead of the vine.
Wednesday, July 29 View Page
Paton pot close up. Good results but deffo bigger pots next year.
Saturday, August 1 View Page
View from the east side. Netting prevents birds from entering. Unfortunately it doesn't stop moles, and I think we have one again this year.
Sunday, August 2 View Page
DAP41 and 605lb which is 1% behind last year and averaging 32lb a day last week.
Sunday, August 9 View Page
DAP 49 reads 863lb with a daily average of 36.8lb over the week. This is 9% better than the same stage last year so I hope we can keep it up! Some of the older leaves nearer the stump end are showing signs of senescence. No sign of PM yet though I've been using Avatar, Subdue & Prestop to protect the roots. Water is 150-200 litres a day with EC 1.3 using sulphuric acid to get pH varying from 6.5 - 7.1 and Kristalon Brown 3-11-38. Plant growth is limited to just two tertiary vines filling in the gap behind the pumpkin.
Thursday, August 13 View Page
Today is 52 DAP and 986lb which is 13% better than same stage last year, I need to maintain at least 10% to beat 1500lb which is my aim this year. Recent hot and sunny weather has helped massively, but we're in for several days if not a week of cloud and rain, just when we don't want it. This view is from the stem end which shows a polycarbonate sheet suspended by ropes from the metal framework so that water from the overhead misters will run off without getting the pumpkin wet. The sheet also has a white tarp fastened to it to reflect heat and light. The thermostat for the overheads is just to the left of the pumpkin slightly above leaf height.
Monday, August 17 View Page
Last week over a 3 day period of warmth & sunshine the pumpkin gained 134lb which is an amazing 44lb per day..... the past 3 days have been rainy and overcast and it's gained just 16lb per day... go figure... this plant really wants to grow but the weather won't play ball. All in all at DAP 56 we have 1076lb with plenty of time yet so let's see what happens.
Thursday, August 20 View Page
Not a pretty pic of young, vibrant leaves and a glowing pumpkin, but an ugly pic of old gnarly leaves and the stump of the main vine. The older leaves die out naturally, and their nutritional value is recycled within the plant. A few years back rot had set in around the stump by this stage, so the prevention strategy now is 1 - keep the stump clear of new growth to allow air to circulate, 2 - keep stump dry with umbrella and fan, 3 - pinch off drip lines in stump area to prevent watering, 4 - rotate a selection of fungicides. So far so good and no sign of rot.
Sunday, August 23 View Page
DAP62 tapes 1187lb which is an average of 19lb per day and 135lb for the week. A much slower week due to cold & cloudy weather. We're off on holiday now for another week.
Monday, August 31 View Page
DAP 69 tapes 1257lb which is a gain of just 59lb this week. It's been cold, cloudy and wet all week and we've had just one day of sun since 12 August. The anti-fungal plan seems to be working as there's no sign of PM or anything else bad for that matter. Watering is now with EC 0.9-1.2 and pH 6.8-7.2 using just Omina through the driplines and rotational sprays of tea, fulvic, phosphite, InCa, silica and Ca chelate overhead.
Friday, September 4 View Page
If the measurements are accurate and nothing bad happens, then I just broke my PB today with 1356lb at DAP 74 and with 5 weeks to go until weigh-off. I'd love to get over 1500 but we'll just have to wait and see. The view is from the stump and it shows older leaves dying off; the older they are, the more decrepit they appear and their ability to power fruit growth diminishes. Young(ish) and middle-aged leaves are best suited to grow fruit, when their size, position and maturity is at optimal level. I think this suits the diamond pattern I've been working on, which limits the number of older secondaries, and places more of a demand on fresher leaves which are better placed in the middle of the plant. It's hard to tell without doing proper experiments but it makes sense to me when working in an area of limited size.
Sunday, September 6 View Page
The weather has been a bit better this week and the numbers reflect it, we're up 108lb to 1375lb on DAP 76. The plant is aging and so is the pumpkin with cantalouping lines & marks becoming more apparent each day.
Monday, September 7 View Page
Growth rate showing weight vs. DAP comparing last year (red) to this year (blue). At the moment we're 7% bigger than the same stage last year where we ended up with 1354lb. We need about 10% to beat my aim of 1500lb, and with about 4 weeks to go it may/may not happen, who knows?!
Sunday, September 13 View Page
We're up 65lb this week to 1440lb with 3 weeks to go before the show. Even at this late stage it's amazing what a half-decent spell of weather can do and next week is looking promising. Meanwhile Oliver has broken his PB with 370lb so he's very happy with that.
Sunday, September 20 View Page
We're at DAP 90 taping 406OTT which charts at 1468lb, averaging about 4lb a day now. Even with the bright weather all week, growth is slow as the plant nears the end of its life. I just need to protect it from fungus and insects now and try and prolong things best I can.
Wednesday, September 30 View Page
Just over a week to go until the weigh off at Pinetops, at DAP 97 the pumpkin was taping 1515lb; objective achieved for the year if it makes it to the scale so I'd be happy with that! It's still making 4-5lb per day, even at this late stage, so who knows where it will end up?
Friday, October 9 View Page
After a crazy year we're finally there, 109 DAP has given us 414" which is 1544lb on the chart. Tomorrow is the big day, we're loaded up and ready to go!
Friday, October 9 View Page
Oliver with his, and me with mine, loaded up & ready to go.
Saturday, October 10 View Page
Oliver's up first and he's delighted with his 448, a new personal best!
Saturday, October 10 View Page
Then me with 1558lb which has won 2nd place in the UK competition this year. Delighted with that as 1500 was the primary aim, so a new PB while having fun & learning a lot. More improvements on the way for next year!
Saturday, October 10 View Page
A bundle of nerves as the Patons await the announcement of the weight of the largest pumpkin the world has ever seen. It may tape the largest, but is it the heaviest???
Saturday, October 10 View Page
Not quite! But a new PB, a new UK record, and just 1% lighter than the current world record is quite a feat!!! Incredible - and there's always next year fellas!
Sunday, October 25 View Page
The water in the allotment gets cut off over winter but I thought I'd fill the water butts and see how long I could keep a cover crop of rye growing rather that just covering everything until spring like I have been doing. Pic shows seedlings popping up this morning. Pulling the pumpkin plant showed root rot so I sent samples to the lab and they said Phytophthora. So I'll get some brown mustard in with the rye if not too late. I can't say I'm surprised given the amount of watering I've done this summer. Next year I will ease off a bit with water, and rethink the fungicide schedule.
Saturday, November 14 View Page
Rye, mustard and vetch coming along OK.


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