Nutmeg pumpkin - cultivation and care of the edible pumpkin variety

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Nutmeg pumpkin - cultivation and care of the edible pumpkin variety: edible

For several hundred years, pumpkins have been grown in our gardens. Over time, new, tasty varieties were added. One of them is the nutmeg pumpkin, which provides fresh food throughout the winter with its firm meat, good shelf life and pleasant taste. It is easy to grow and requires little care, but it is well worth the effort with a rich harvest. Here is some advice on how to easily cultivate the nutmeg pumpkin in your own garden.

Location and ground

Pumpkins thrive in almost any soil, but it's best to plant them in loose, well-drained soil. A sunny to half-shady place proves to be ideal. Nutrient-rich soil is an advantage, but not a condition. Then you can help with compost. The nutmeg pumpkin does not need a special fertilizer. Heat is also an important criterion for the cultivation of nutmeg gourds. If it gets cooler than 12┬░ C, it is recommended to use a tunnel foil for the young plants so as not to hinder growth. It can be removed as soon as it becomes permanently more than 15┬░ C during the day, but at the latest when the first flowers appear to allow the insects access.
Pumpkins generally require a lot of water, because the nutmeg squash is no exception. So make sure that the floor does not dry out. Waterlogging, however, is also not pleasant, make for a loose soil structure. Once the plants have grown, about mid to late June, can be mulched. As a result, less water needs to be poured, and later the mulch helps to keep the growing fruits dry. This prevents, especially in later heavy and large fruits, that putrefaction in rainy summers.
Tip: When sowing, make sure that the plant has sufficient space later on. Per pumpkin plant is expected on average about one square meter, rather a little more, it should not be less.

Sowing and care

Ideally, the nutmeg pumpkin is sown in the garden at the end of April until the beginning. You can also prefer young plants in the seed pot, then the seedlings are pikiert. Externally seeded plants should be poked about three weeks after germination. When sowing up to three seeds are placed in a hole, only the strongest plant remains after germination. So the plants do not take each other space, water and nutrients away. Once the plant has grown and spreads, it is worth trimming the main shoot. Per plant should not mature more than two to three fruits, so that there are magnificent, large and good quality fruits. At the beginning remove regularly occurring weeds, so that no nutrients and no water are lost.
  • keep enough distance between the planting holes, 50 to 80 cm should be
  • Water thoroughly after sowing, avoid waterlogging so that the seeds do not rot
  • When pouring, make sure that neither leaves nor fruit get wet, pour directly on the ground
  • To protect large fruits from rot or pest infestation, a wooden board can be placed
  • Gently pour daily, nutmeg gourds need plenty of water
  • If you water in the evening, the plant will be able to absorb the water overnight and will not evaporate in the sun

Diseases and pests

pumpkin plant

Not only we humans like the nutmeg pumpkin, in the garden also the snails prefer to migrate to the aromatic plants. To prevent this, you should regularly inspect the plants for snail infestation. If the pests emerge, they should be collected immediately. For larger populations, you can build a snail fence that keeps the animals permanently away. The use of chemical agents should always be avoided in order not to let the ingredients get into the pumpkins. Another problem may be aphids that affect the leaves and stems. However, since the nutmeg pumpkin is a strong growth, it should not matter much to such an infestation. If the plants are still young, a strong spray with a sharp jet of water is sufficient. As soon as fruit is already present, this should be avoided to prevent rot. As a disease, mildew and tan can show, both are fungal diseases that should only be fought with strong infestation with fungicides. In order to avoid these diseases, it is already possible to prevent from insufficient space and casting from below. Shortened, vigorous plants can fight well against pests and diseases.
  • make a tea with two cloves of garlic and half a liter of water with the spray bottle against the powdery mildew
  • Milk is also effective against mildew, the microorganisms fight the fungus, 1 part of water and 8 parts of milk, do not use in the blazing sun
Tip: Most fungal infections do not occur until late summer, so they have no effect on the fruits themselves. Treatment with home remedies does not harm the fruits and can be repeated weekly if necessary.

Harvest and storage

Nutmeg gourds are harvested in autumn, five to six months after sowing. They are usually ripe in the middle to the end of September, but you should pick them only when leaves and stems are dry. When harvesting, the fruits should be handled with particular care if they are intended for longer storage. Any impact may damage the shell, causing rot or mold.
  • Store only whole pumpkins in a dry place, the temperature should be between 12┬░ C and 18┬░ C
  • Keep stored nutmegs intact at least every 14 days
  • If the stalk is no longer firm and woody, the pumpkin could rot from the inside
  • When stored, the fruits should not touch each other
  • never lay directly on the ground, a small pallet provides air supply even from below
The delicious nutmeg pumpkins from our own garden ensure tasty soups, casseroles, cakes and much more throughout the winter. The aromatic fruits can easily be cultivated in your own garden and are stable for months, so that you can take your time with the processing. The easy cultivation and the uncomplicated care make the nutmeg squash a must for those who appreciate the good taste of healthy fruits.

Worth knowing about the nutmeg pumpkin shortly

  • The nutmeg pumpkin has a slight taste of nutmeg. This also gives him his name.
  • The nutmeg pumpkin is one of the most popular types of pumpkin on the German market in addition to the garden squash and the hokkaido pumpkin.
  • With a weight of up to 40 kilograms per piece, the nutmeg pumpkin is also one of the largest pumpkin varieties.
  • The color of its shell varies between a dark green, orange and brown.
  • The place of sowing should be in addition to plenty of sunlight, warm and protected from the wind.
  • In addition, the sowing should be carried out on a compost heap, since there the humus is sufficiently moist and supplies the necessary nutrients.
  • The seeds for the cultivation should be bought in a hardware store or in the garden center or in special online shops.
  • The pumpkin seeds of already harvested nutmeg gourds are not suitable for the successful cultivation of nutmeg gourds.
  • For the breeding you can make the pollination of the female flowers even with a brush.
  • The sowing takes place first in the month of April in a vessel.
  • From May you can plant the small plants at a distance of about one and a half meters from each other.
  • The planting of the plants of the nutmeg gourd should be done after the ice saint!
  • For the care of sowing regular watering and supplying the nutmeg pumpkin plant with nutrients.
plant out
  • When sowing the young pumpkin seedlings, it is important that the roots and shoots are not damaged.
  • The shoots should, if they have reached a length of 60 cm or already forms the fourth leaf approach, be shortened.
  • When the pumpkin fruit of the nutmeg squash develops, the pumpkin plant has an increased water requirement.
  • If you want to grow a large pumpkin fruit, make sure that the tendril that forms the fruit is in the shade.
  • In addition, one should only grow one flower on each shoot and cut the others.
  • Smaller nutmeg can be grown by always trimming the main shoot when the fifth or sixth leaf has grown out.
  • Basically, one should after about eight Fruchtans├Ątzen all other female flowers separate from the plant.
  • In strong sunlight you can cover the Muskatk├╝rbisfr├╝chte with wet towels. This prevents cracks in the shell.
  • To check if the nutmeg gourds are ripe, simply tap on the skin of each fruit. If the sound is hollow, the pumpkin is ripe.
  • The nutmeg is harvested at the beginning of November. One should make sure that the nutmeg squashes get no frost.
  • After harvesting, the nutmeg pumpkin is first stored for five to seven days in a warm place, for example in a boiler room.
  • If the skin is undamaged, place the nutmeg gourds at 10 to 13┬░ C in a cool, dry place on a wooden pallet.
  • The nutmeg pumpkin can be stored at this point under constant temperature conditions for four to six months.

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