Tag Archives: giant pumpkin

Pumpkin’s Progress–2013

Howdy, all! Oops, just back from my dear niece’s country-themed weddin’ — so much fun and I guess I’m still talking cowboy. I wish Rachel and Johnny many blessings, especially as Johnny heads off to boot camp in a few days to join our armed forces.

Behold, HRH King Arthur
Behold, HRH King Arthur

When we got back to suburbia from our travels, we were pleased to find that this year’s giant pumpkin was doing very well. Giant pumpkins put on weight very, very quickly (up to 20 pounds a day for the size we grow) and it’s noticeable when you haven’t seen it for a few days. As of today it’s about 200 pounds–just a baby in the competitive world. The world record pumpkin in 2012 weighed in at 2009 pounds. Yes, you read that right, two thousand and nine pounds, and was grown in Rhode Island. Click here to see one ton o’gourd.

Last year at our local agricultural fair (Four Town Fair), we were beaten out for King of the Pumpkin Patch by a kid–a KID! (WTG, sweetie!) But Mr. Suze and the Crown Prince, who have claimed for the last several years that this will be the last time we grow them, were undeterred and dutifully ordered seeds and some kind of organic fertilizer, which they apply faithfully. Every day they go out and bury the pumpkin vines as they grow and put down new roots so the plant can suck up more water. And it seems to be paying off. In just a few weeks, King Arthur will be off to sit on his pallet throne and we’ll see who takes home the prize.

So, wish us luck. Wish me luck as I prepare to turn in my first book to my wonderful editor–I had no idea it would be so hard to call it done (for now) and let it go but I can’t wait to see her suggestions to make my book way better. And wish my niece and new nephew much luck and love as they start their life together (or apart, temporarily). And for all of you, dear Scribelings, blessings of the harvest season!

When Life Gives You Fungus, Make a Jack-o-Lantern Instead

It’s Thursday again.  Suze here.  Fall, or autumn as some say, is my favorite time of the year.  Don’t get all technical on me, sky watchers.  I know the Autumnal Equinox does not arrive until 5:04 a.m. September 23, so today is actually the last day of summer.  It’s close enough for me!  Cooler temperatures, leaves changing colors, Major League Baseball playoffs (go Yankees!), and harvest fairs — what’s not to love?

Eat your heart out, Headless Horseman!

Those of you who have been following the Scribes for a while might remember my post about Captain America, the giant pumpkin Mr. Suze and our teenage son have been growing all summer.  Here’s a link back to the original post, if you want a refresher or you’ve joined us recently.

For months Suze’s men tended the Dill Atlantic Giant growing in the backyard, lovingly tented him every morning with a sunshade and snuggled him up at night with a blanket. They bathed his tumescent orange flesh in fungicide, and enriched the soil in which he was growing with secret natural fertilizers.  Every few days, they headed outside with a notebook and a tape measure and made calculations of his weight and the rate at which he was growing.  At the last measurement, he weighed in at 375 pounds or so — not the biggest pumpkin ever grown here, but respectable.   Elaborate plans were made to lift him onto a trailer by means of a gantry and antique block and tackle device.  Captain America was destined for glory at our local fair.

Then, disaster struck.  Weeks of heavy rain proved too much for the behemoth gourd, and two days before he was to be transported, Captain America developed a soft spot of rot, rendering him ineligible for the competition.  Perhaps our pumpkin patch just wasn’t sincere enough.

Depressing, right?  Well, for a while.  My menfolk cut the top off the pumpkin, scooped out the seeds to dry for next year, and carved out a Jack-o-lantern face.  Turns out the fair people were happy to have Captain America as a decoration, and this year a different kid won the King of the Pumpkin Patch award — something I know that kid will remember for the rest of his life.  All in all, it turned out OK, and it gives us something to look forward to next year. 

Just goes to show you that it pays to be able to roll with the punches and come up grinning.  How about you?  Got any lemons-into-lemonade moments you’d like to share?