Monday, October 18, 2010

pumpkin mahem

One day I found two pumpkin seeds.
I planted one and pulled the weeds.
It sprouted roots and a big, long vine.
A pumpkin grew; I called it mine.
The pumpkin was quite round and fat.
(I really am quite proud of that.)
But there is something I'll admit
That has me worried just a bit.
I ate the other seed, you see.
Now will it grow inside of me?

(I'm so relieved since I have found
That pumpkins only grow in the ground!)

Last year we had a serious infestation of squash bugs.   They wiped out the majority of our garden including the pumpkin plants.  We resorted to purchasing pumpkins.  Which we didn't mind too much at the time.  (It has always been a tradition to go to the local pumpkin patch and pick us some pumpkins.)  After Halloween, we composted said pumpkins to increase the fertility of our soil.

After last years woes, we decided not to attempt to grow pumpkins this year.
But, to our surprise, we found some sprouts working their way through the garden.  They had come from the pumpkins we had purchased.
The sprouts came up much later than everything we had planted.  We seemed to have missed the influx of squash bugs.  We crossed our fingers, in hopes that we would have success through the season.  
As the season went on, we watched our garden grow.  And with the growing, the pumpkin vines crept further and further.  Soon, we were worried that the rest of the garden would become overwhelmed by the pumpkin vines. 
Then, the wonderful torturous summer weather declared mayhem on our garden.  The winds came, knocking down the corn.  The rains came, water logging everything.  Then, the HAIL came.  It destroyed everything in it's path.  Peppers became holy.  Tomatoes and corn were bruised.  Leaves of all kind were destroyed.  
Our poor pumpkins were still green.  Their leaves now tattered.  They had pox marks from the decimating hail.  It looked hopeless.
As we assessed the damage, we were hopeful that the few leaves that remained, would beat the odds and continue to aid the ailing gourds.  
To our surprise, they continued to grow.  There were more pumpkins than before the storm.  Our vines  flourished.
Nothing is better than growing a crop of tremendous pumpkins.  Everything homegrown has a much specialer countenance to it.  Even the kids seem to understand this.  Bayli and Chase are so proud of their pumpkins. They checked on them daily in the garden, now they check on them as they grace the porch.  
I can guarantee that we will be composting pumpkins again this year, in hopes that we have another successful crop next fall.

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