Sunday, October 5, 2014

Harvesting the Pumpkins

It is finally pumpkin-harvest time! Some of them have looked ready for months, but I left them on the vine until the vine started to die back a bit. And now, we've got a whole bunch of pumpkins of every size. I started with six little pumpkin starts that were probably about 9" tall. Two were "Giant" pumpkin plants, two were your basic jack-o-lantern pumpkins, and two were the tiny decorative pumpkins. 

It was so much fun to gather the pumpkins with our little grandson. He was so intrigued with the tiny pumpkins and with the idea that you could just cut them right off the vine.

We got over 40 of the tiny pumpkins out of those two little plants. I love those little pumpkins. The grandkids love them, too. They're the perfect size for them to help with the gathering!

As I mentioned in a previous post, I planted the plants in and around my regular flower beds, which I ended up loving! It was so fun to have pumpkins showing up in and around my other plants. And it made the gathering interesting, as you had to follow vines and see if there were any pumpkins all along the way.

This was our haul from this year. Not bad for $10 worth of plants, and not much work! We learned a few things this year that we can put into practice next year and hopefully improve the size and shape of our giant pumpkins.

At least we're improving. The photo below is all I got from last year's harvest... four pumpkins from 10 seeds planted. And they were rather soft so they didn't last outside as long as I would have liked.

And speaking of work... I have finished drying about 98 boxes of apple-pears. Okay, so maybe there weren't quite that many, but it sure seemed like it. I'll put them down in my dark, cool food storage room and see how well they do. They are supposed to be good for at least a year, so we'll see. I really have enjoyed drying them this year. It makes the house smell so yummy all day long, but sometimes it's hard carving out an extra hour at the beginning of the day to do all the prep work for the drying. Plus, my dehydrator and all the gear take up a good portion of my kitchen. I like to have things put in their place, so it will be nice to have everything back where it all belongs and to have my kitchen counters back!

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