A NEW PERSONAL BEST AND A NEW HALF MOON BAY RECORD
We were fortunate to win at Half Moon Bay, California this year. The competition was intense with 80 entries, 10 of which were over 1,000 pounds. The weigh-off is always on Columbus Day. The winner stays until the following weekend to participate in the HMB Pumpkin Festival. Over 250,000 people descend on the small coastal community for the parade, music, food and fun. A float for the parade was designed with a California beach theme, complete with dune buggy, surfboards and a large sand dune. Our 1,229-pound pumpkin was atop the hill of white sand and I rode through the streets of HMB in a beach chair sitting right next to the pumpkin. Also the winner and his family are treated to a 2-night stay at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in HMB. The hotel is surrounded by an outstanding golf course and has spectacular ocean views. It is an experience in itself!! Also in the video are visits to many top Northwest growers pumpkin patches.
Our 1,229 was a survivor. It was actually my 5th or 6th best pumpkin during early and mid-season. Everything grew like gangbusters this year and at one point I had 8 pumpkins on track to reach 1,000 pounds or more. 5 days of intense rain in mid-August put many of the prospects on growth curves that were not sustainable if the pumpkin had any kind of structural flaw. Sag lines, blossom splits, and stem splits took their toll. After the 1st month from fruit set, my best prospect was on the 846 Calai, and was over 100 pounds larger than my best ever at 30 days, unfortunately it blossom end split. My pumpkin on the 1,260 Weir then became the leading contender and reached an estimated 911 pounds at 45 days. The 1,260 was on such a growth curve that if I added just the average total inches my pumpkins usually grow after 45 days, it was headed to over 1,500 pounds. Alas, after some big rains it stem split into the cavity on August 12th. On August 28th, I had one on the Bobier 723 that estimated at 1,184 pounds and was still going over 21-pounds per day when it blossom end split. I weighed it on a certified scale on September 2nd at 1,194 pounds. I had another one at 1,127 pounds that developed a pinhole at a sag-line/rib interface that was weighed as “un-official only” at the Puyallup Fair on September 10th. Without the big August rains that we hardly ever get, I think several more of these prospects would have made it through the season.
After preparing the soil in the spring with a light application of commercial fertilizer, I used our Soluble Seaweed, Soluble fish and the Biomin Calcium exclusively through the season. I also used the Bio-Endo Plus (endomycorrizal fungi) in the potting soil, in the planting hole and at each leaf axil on at least the main vine of each plant.
Fertilzer products are available for purchace.
This year, while the supply lasts,
we will include free with each 2004
video a seed from my personal best
1,229#, plus two more packets of 3
seeds each from our other giant pumpkins.
This offer includes at least 7 world-class
seeds free, a value that probably
exceeds the cost of the video.
Listing fo the seeds:
All of our pumpkins weighed over
the charts. I think using foliar sprays
of soluble seaweed powder and liquid
calcium help “make ‘em heavy”.
1,229#:380” (805 Pukos X 919 Holland) A new personal best and new record for Half Moon Bay. The light orange fruit went 9.6% heavy.
1,194 #: 387” (723Bobier X 1,260 Weir) this fruit was orange and 42” tall. Blossom-split on 8/28, weighed on a certified scale on 9/2, was still growing over 21# a day. 10# over the chart.
1,127#:364.5” (1,097 Beachy X 805 Pukos) it was yellow-orange. Developed a tiny pinhole at a sag line/rib interface on 9/10. It was weighed on a certified scale at the Puyallup Fair on the day of harvest. 13.8% heavy.
995#: 361” (1,134 Holland X 1,260 Weir) this was a very long, wide fruit with a nice deep orange color. Won 2 nd place at Central Market. 3.4% heavy.
954#-Est.:360” (919 Holland X 1,134 Holland) This pumpkin was a long and wide orange pumpkin that split on a sag line on 8/21.
915#-Est.:355” (966 Holland X 1,134 Holland) High, blocky, yellow-orange fruit that developed a small split on 8/25 after 5 days of heavy rain.
791#: 333.5” (844 Wycoff X 919 Holland) It was harvested early for the Puyallup Fair. It was a long, and light-colored pumpkin. It was 4% heavy on the chart.
750 #: 321.5” (1,134 Holland X 805 Pukos) A nice, trouble-free pumpkin that grew on the same plant as the 995. It was long and orange and weighed 10% heavy.
717#-Est.: 327” (919 Holland X 805 Pukos) this was a high wheel shaped orange pumpkin that split on 8/27 after the heavy rains.
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