Inside The New York Botanical Garden

Eleven Giant Pumpkin Fun Facts

Posted in Programs and Events on October 22 2010, by Plant Talk

Ann Rafalko is Director of Online Content.

Here are some fun facts I learned about giant pumpkins from the farmers that grow them.

– During peak growth, the pumpkins can add as much as 50 pounds of weight per day.

– The pale color of the pumpkins has been genetically selected for because the farmers think it looks nice. The pale salmon color also contains tinge of blue that highlights the genetic heritage of the Blue Hubbard squash.

– Each pumpkin contains approximately 800 seeds.

– The Guinness World Record-holding pumpkin that weighs 1,810 1/2 pounds and the Michigan-grown pumpkin that weighs 1,725 pounds were both grown from seeds from the same pumpkin.

– Growers expect a one ton (2,000 pound) pumpkin within the next few years.

– Giant pumpkins are grown for weight, not necessarily for size. In fact the World Record-holding pumpkin is actually smaller than its less weighty brothers.

– That said, the unofficial world’s tallest pumpkin was also grown by Chris Stevens (according to his wife).

– The pumpkins are grown on a bed of sand to help prevent skin cracking that could be caused by friction with the ground.

– Each of the giant pumpkins was grown as the only fruit on their vine.

– All the pumpkins on display at The New York Botanical Garden were grown using sustainable, mostly organic practices. The growers all attribute their successes to caring for the soil, using lots of organic fertilizer, and using Mycorrhizae fungus to promote healthy root systems.

– Every grower said the same thing: Growing giant pumpkins at home is fun, easy, and a great family activity. To learn more, check

And check back here at Plant Talk where we’ll be posting video interviews with the growers as soon as we can.