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Subject:  Only WE can prevent pumpkin lifting strap damage..

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Syracuse, NY

For as long as i have admired and sort-of grown giant pumpkins, i have wanted to bring up the idea of preventing 100% of the lifting strap friction damage to unprotected pumpkin skin. We spend the entire season, from pollination to prizewinning, keeping anything at all from marring our beautiful babies. The list thereof would be endless...

And then comes moving them...
And then comes weighing them...

Please view these examples and then read on;
These guys have the right idea, with a slight need of upscaling a bit on both of their parts, lol:



Being that i could not find ANY other examples, it is apparent that this NEEDS to be incorporated into the growing regimen, across the board, by individual growers and especially by the Weighoff Sites themselves!
I am saddened to see that even World Record fruits have the scars of lifting straps as a common occurrence(!)

Piping insulation is CHEAP, readily-available and PERFECT for this purpose, in 6-foot lengths with an adhesive slit up one side of it; it does not need to be as big inside as the strap material itself is wide(!) - so, very cheap is VERY possible;

9/12/2020 3:09:19 PM


Syracuse, NY

The lifting sling would be hung from a high-enough point, such as the lifting tractor, the material merely slipped onto each strap and either the protective plastic peeled away and the material stuck together or left unadhered until it might be needed to be stuck together later; the slit has to be AWAY from the pumpkin(!)

A zip tie is needed around each piece at the top for a friction-stoppable placement, preferably to place the bottoms of the pieces at the very bottoms of the straps, which can be pushed up out of the way if need be and they'll stay there;


It is quick, cheap and easy, will prevent ANY strap damage to ANY pumpkin, and it is actually EASIER to move the straps around at the fruit because they now have more direction to them because OF the stiffer pipe insulation. Even THAT is reason enough to give this a shot!

There is plenty of time to try this out for even weighoffs occurring in two weeks or less -
Put your mask on and hit the Home Depot---

It'll be for a Great Pumpkin Cause!!!

Later---Eric Gerry

9/12/2020 3:09:55 PM

Suburban Gardener

Western Washington

Wow Eric, the warty pumpkin is something else again!

Excellent idea on the piping insulation! Would pool noodles work also, not that I have any of those here, lol!

9/12/2020 3:55:14 PM

G. Kins

Catinthehat, WA

Thanks for the reminder to plan ahead. When the time comes to lift one I always am in a hurry... so I just rationalize it & think "this may cause minor damage... oh well."

9/12/2020 3:59:53 PM

Bubba Presley

Muddy Waters

Yes the 1734 was so smooth I had to try to save the skin.

9/12/2020 4:57:08 PM


Alexandria, Indiana

I typically have to make sure that my pumpkins don't hurt the straps. I do not normally have pretty ones. Lol

9/12/2020 5:34:32 PM

don young

word of caution from experience,seen them slip couple times and drop pumpkin might be great idea be careful

9/12/2020 5:42:45 PM


Whidbey Island

I've used heavy blankets which are held in place once the straps are tightened by the lifted ring. Helped one of my HD winners several years back.

9/12/2020 8:16:50 PM


Syracuse, NY

343 pounds>>>1421.5 Stelts, poll'd by the 2009 Wallace; SOME evidence of wartiness in the offspring, but not like THAT! pool noodles have crossed my mind but i think they'd be too thick and the straps would have to be threaded through each of them - however, LJ had an interesting use for them to support vines; buncha great and comical comments, here - thanks to all! yeah, i always cinch the retaining strap about 3-4 times total (set straps, cinch, lift, set down, cinch, etc.) before committing to that one last lift; indeed, it's all about how well that that is done, by default - that crazy half-knot is like a trigger, too! i just an hour ago removed a 553-pounder that had a split through the stem that was bottomless - would have been a HDA contender - and my pipe'kin'tectors worked GREAT! later---eg

9/12/2020 8:43:05 PM



Make sure you got the rope as tight as possible under the pumpkin curvature and the straps spaced evenly.As mikkal suggested grow ugly ones so you dont have to worry.

9/12/2020 9:11:45 PM


Syracuse, NY

me? never! ha ha ha
either weigh, damage adds to unsightly, and that is probably MORE prone to it - like, a rope pulled around a weak corner will damage both. this doesn't affect ANY method or procedure; it is a win-win; plus, i've got REALLY pretty pumpkins this year, lol---i should have the piping stuff WITH me en route to weighoffs, lol---eg

9/12/2020 9:34:51 PM

Total Posts: 11 Current Server Time: 10/30/2020 6:11:12 AM
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