Keep your garden growing - see what to plant right now

Growing Pumpkin

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
  S S   P              

(Best months for growing Pumpkin in USA - Zone 5a regions)

S = Plant undercover in seed trays P = Sow seed

  • Easy to grow. Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 68°F and 90°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 35 - 47 inches apart
  • Harvest in 15-20 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Sweet Corn
  • Avoid growing close to: Potatoes
  • Pumpkin on vine
    Pumpkin on vine

A large trailing plant with yellow, bell-shaped flowers, pumpkin is frost tender. Most varieties will take up a lot of room . Grow them at the edge of your garden patch so that they can spread away from other vegetables. Butternut produces small to medium pear-shaped fruit with deep orange flesh . Buttercup are small to medium round pumpkins with dark green skin. There are a number of large pumpkins, some round and flattish - good for storage and eating - others will produce the "Cinderella coach" type giant round fruit which are not such good eating.

Harvest when the vines die off and the pumpkins' stalks are dry. Leave a small piece of stalk attached to the fruit to prevent damp causing rot. The fruit can be stored for months in a cool airy place. In some parts of New Zealand, they are stored on shed roofs.

Pumpkins sometimes need hand pollination if the fruit are not setting well or die off after starting to grow.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Pumpkin

Cut up, remove the skin and roast with other vegetables or meat.

Young crisp shoots with young leaves can be cooked and eaten - stewed in coconut milk they are popular in Melanesia. Remove any strings and tough parts and stew until tender, or cook as a vegetable in boiling water 3-5 minutes.

Your comments and tips

30 Jun 18, Luke (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Should I plant/treat winter squash such as Red Kuri the same as pumpkins?
02 Jul 18, Mike L (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Check a website called southern harvest for planting times.
29 Jun 18, Anne Jeffrey (Australia - temperate climate)
Can you please advise me on where to search for Windsor Black seeds, I've been searching for what seems like ever and had no success, I'm trying to revive this pumpkin for my mother who's in her 70s Thank you
02 Jul 18, Mike L (Australia - temperate climate)
Try thelostseed.c.a - they have them but are out of stock at the moment. Ring or send an email as they may have some packets left.
16 Jun 18, Patricia (Australia - temperate climate)
What is the best vege to plant after pumkins
16 Jun 18, Mike L (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
A root vegetable crop. Type into google
31 May 18, Jill Western (Australia - temperate climate)
I would like to plant some butternut pumpkin in a warm sheltered area that has rich soil. Is it possible to plant now in June. Also should I use seeds or buy plants. Thankyou.
01 Jun 18, Mike L (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
A warm sheltered area in June July August is not warm at night. It says to plant in Sept to Dec for a reason - it is a summer growing crop.
26 May 18, Kerri (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I have 2 pet chickens and a whole front yard of pumpkins because of the chickens. Somehow in the rains in February 18 we started growing pumpkins. There’s 6 or more good sized Kent pumpkins there that we can see. I cut one the other day and it was just yellow inside, still a little soft but tasted ok. How long should I wait to harvest the rest?
29 May 18, Mike (Australia - temperate climate)
Wait until the plant starts to die back or dies back in winter. About 20-26 weeks from planting.
Showing 1 - 10 of 527 comments

I was given a Jap pumpkin and I grew a Qld blue earlier this year. The Jap was by far the better for flavor. When I was growing the Qld blue it rained (heavy) several times and the female flowers were very wet inside and just rotted. If no bees plant some flowers (research flowers for bees) around your yard. I'm doing this as I have very few bees I think. Also it is best to grow pumpkin into winter I have read. It wouldn't make any difference if using seeds or seedlings. I have two Jap pumpkin growing now - will be interesting to see if they produce.

- Mike

Please provide your email address if you are hoping for a reply


All comments are reviewed before displaying on the site, so your posting will not appear immediately

Gardenate App

Put Gardenate in your pocket. Buy the app for iPhone, iPad or Android to add your own plants and record your plantings and harvests

Planting Reminders

Join 30,000+ gardeners who rely on Gardenate. Subscribe to our free planting reminders email newsletter


Home | Vegetables and herbs to plant | Climate zones | About Gardenate | Contact us | Privacy Policy

This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
We cannot help if you are overrun by giant slugs.