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Fertilizing and Watering

Subject:  Watering, Fertilizing, and surges in growth

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Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada

Hey everyone,

I am looking back a little bit about how the last few months of my rookie year went and reflecting on what to do differently next year. Through most of the season I did daily measurements of OTT to help gauge a little bit of what was going on with the plant and learn for down the road. I was very careful to measure in the same places each day, so while the numbers may not be 100% accurate, I feel like overall they were pretty good.

I'll pause here for some background - my patch is a 325 square foot area that is essentially my entire front yard. I set up soaker hoses and had them on timers so my watering was daily and very consistent. We had our typical droughty summer (even a little drier than typical) so 99% of all the water the plant was getting was under my control. After amending and putting down fertilizers in the spring, I was fertilizing ~3-4 days with a hose-end sprayer. What I didn't do a good job of doing until towards the end of the season is recording which days I fertilized.

What I noticed is that the first 20 days DAP were pretty steady, with the pumpkin ramping on day 21 and holding more or less steady with minor fluctuations from 25-40 DAP. After that there was a bit of a trend where I'd have a big day and then followed by 2-4 days of slower gains, followed by another big one-day surge. It cycled like this until 74 DAP when I started measuring less frequently. Generally, it doesn't seem like my fertilizing was immediately followed by a surge in growth, but rather that there would be a lag. So I'm curious whether others have noticed this and if there is any information about how quickly between an influx of water and/or nutrients those are taken up by the plant and a surge can be expected.

10/11/2022 4:36:05 PM


Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada

To muddy the picture even more, I slowed down the fertilizer toward the end and did my last fertilizer at 90 DAP. At 95 DAP, my 5 day average was 2.2 pounds per day (had been ~5-6 pounds a day for a couple of weeks leading up to this. Then in the last few days before cutting it off the vine I was getting growth cracks on the fruit and my average for the last 4 days was 9.5 pounds a day, a number I hadn't been hitting since the first half of September. Pumpkin was cut from the vine on the evening of day 99. Curious to hear other people's thoughts and experiences.

10/11/2022 4:36:45 PM


Pumpkin Zone

Thats interesting. I was wondering the same thing recently. My thought was, maybe if the fertilizing is too infrequent the rest of the plant becomes like an overdrawn bank account, or a credit card that a person missed a payment on. You gotta bring the plant back to zero before there can be any extra for the pumpkin. Kinda like if your bank account is empty the bank wouldn't want to cash a big check for you, they'd want a day or two for things to clear first. Whereas if things are already positive, you can bump it up and get the full bang for your buck immediately.

10/11/2022 6:38:40 PM

Total Posts: 3 Current Server Time: 2/8/2023 12:00:35 AM
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