"Self-sufficiency does not mean 'going back' to the acceptance of a lower standard of living. On the contrary, it is the striving for a higher standard of living, for food that is organically grown and good, for the good life in pleasant surroundings... and for the satisfaction that comes from doing difficult and intricate jobs well and successfully." John Seymour ~ Self Sufficiency 2003

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Growing pumpkins / squash 3 ways

I am determined to grow some squash, and at least a pumpkin this year, so I am trying three different ways in my town garden.

Firstly, I have planted a pumpkin and squash plant in a straw bale - yeah, I know it should probably only have been one of the plants, but my space here is limited.
Secondly, I have planted one of each (providing the snails don't eat the damn plants before they've had a sporting chance) into a big hole in the (rooty) ground which is filled with compost, and a thick layer of shredded paper from our office, and with still more compost on top of that, and finally some shadecloth to protect it all...
The bricks are there to ensure that the
shadecloth doesn't blow away in our
 summer South Easterly wind
And, finally, I have planted a pumpkin plant into a compost filled large pot, which is situated right next to an irrigation sprinkler.
Which one will work?  Time will tell.

But, I mentioned in this posting that my neighbours tree roots are encroaching on my vegetable patch area - here are the trees / bushes in question...
Metrosideros / Eugenia hedge
And here are the roots.  The Metrosideros / Eugenia are situated roughly 3 mtrs (10 feet) from the boundary wall to where I have planted my sweetcorn - the only place I have in my town garden...
I wonder if I will get any corn this year...?  To "weed" this area would take more than I am capable of digging up - the amount of roots below the soil is horrific

On the farm - well, I reckon that the broad beans were such a success that I'm going to try the same with pumpkins LOL  So I am also growing a couple in b-i-g buckets filled with neat compost on the far, with timed irrigation running past them... Let's see what happens.


  1. Just wondering, can anyone in your area grow squash? I know that southern warmer climates in the US can not grow squash. Just wondering what your up against :)

  2. It's hard to imagine not being able to grow squash. In our area it grows abundantly. Will even grow in the wild. Trappers and frontiersmen used to plant it along the rivers on their way west in the spring and pick on their way back through.
    Living in a small rural area, nobody locks their cars except in the summer and fall. Left unlocked, it will be filled with zucchini squash when you return. Only way to get rid of extra!

  3. Jane - I know that some people can grow squash, but I can't. At least not in my town garden, but I am trying on the farm...

    John - Soooo frustrating, too! Hmmm, think I need to drive over there park awhile, and see what happens!

  4. Good luck! If there's a way, it must be one of the three you're trying.

  5. I'm experimenting with growing pumpkins too. I've planted 3 in some large pots in my front yard. I tried growing them in the ground there last year but I think the soil was too impoverished. This year *might* be better... I might actually get some pumpkins!!

  6. Jody - I'll let you know :)

    Frogdancer - Welcome :) That will be cool. Then we can compare results / methods / harvests (if I get any... LOL)


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