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Performance of Pumpkin Cultivars, Ames Plantation, 2001

Charles A. Mullins, Marshall Smith, and A. Brent Smith

 

Interpretative Summary

The pumpkin cultivars were highly productive and fruit size was very large for most of the large fruited cultivars. ‘Appalachian’ was among the top producers of large fruit.

Introduction

Pumpkins are gown in large commercial acreage for the Halloween market in Tennessee. An estimated 3500 acres of pumpkins are produced in Tennessee, with over half on the Cu9mberland Plateau. Pumpkins have been a profitable crop in recent years, and acreage production seems to increase each year. Several tobacco and row crop producers have considered or actually produced pumpkins as an alternative crop. Pumpkin production has many problems that need to be addressed for successful production f pumpkins. Weed control can be a problem in pumpkins as labeled herbicides fail to control all species of weeds adequately. Insecticides and fungicides need to be applied on a 7 to 10 day frequency. Bees are needed for pollination. Pumpkins require a fairly high degree of management for successful results. An experiment was conducted at the Ames Plantation at Grand Junction TN in 2001 to evaluate performance of 10 pumpkin cultivars.

Materials and Methods

The site was prepared for planting by conventional tillage methods. Fertilizer was broadcast at 400 lb/A of 15-15-15 and incorporated with a disk on May 10. Bensulide (Prefar) was applied at 6.0 lf ai/A on June 11 and soil incorporated with the final disking. Plots were direct seeded with the selected cultivars on June 12. Plot size was one row, with a spacing of 12 by 20 ft. Each row contained 5 hills with 3 seeds/hill. After germination, hills were thinned to 2 plants/hill. Experimental plot design was a randomized complete block with four replications. A preemergence application of clomazone (Command) at 0.3375 lb ai/A was made on June 3.

Insect control was by esfenvalerate (Asana) at 0.05 lb ai/A alternated with carbaryl (Sevin) at 1.0 lb ai/A on a 7 to 10 frequency. Fungicides were azoxystrobin (Quaddris) at 0.25 lb ai/A alternated with a combination of chlorothalonil (Bravo) at 2.0 lb ai/A and myclobutanil (Nova) at 0.125 lb ai/A applied with each insecticide treatment. Pumpkins were harvested on Sept 25 and 28. Harvested pumpkins were sorted according to sizes of over 20 lb, 15 to 20 lb, 10 to 15 lb, and less than 10 lb. Number and weight of pumpkins in each weight range were recorded. Quality ratings were made at harvest. All ratings were on a 1 to 10 scale with 10 the most desirable. All data were analyzed by analysis of variance methods, and means were separated by Duncan’s multiple range tests at the 0.05 level.

Results and Discussion

Total tons of pumpkins produced were not significantly different between the cultivars (Table 1). ‘Hybrid Pam’, which was the only small fruited cultivar, produced a higher tonnage in the less than 10 lb class than any other cultivar. ‘Mother Lode’ was among varieties that produced a larger tonnage that weighed over 20 lb per pumpkin. ‘Appalachian’ led several cultivars that produced a higher tonnage that weighed between 15 and 20 lb per pumpkin. Fruit of ‘Hybrid Pam’ had the lowest average weight. The remaining varieties were not significantly different.

‘Hybrid Pam’ was among the cultivars to produce more pumpkins per acre. ‘Hybrid Pam’ also produced more pumpkins that weighed less than 10 lb per pumpkin than any other cultivar (Table 2). Yields in number of fruit per acre generally were very high. This is a high yield since the row spacing was 12 ft in order to help separate the cultivars at harvest. ‘Other Lode’ produced more fruit that weighed over 20 lb per pumpkin than all cultivars except ‘Appalachian’, ‘Aspen’, ‘Autumn King’, Gold Rush’, and Gold Strike’. ‘Appalachian’ was among the leading varieties for pumpkins per acre in the 15 to 20 class.
No significant differences were found among the cultivars for quality characteristics, fruit length, nor fruit diameter (Table 3).

Table 1. Yield in tons per acre of different size classes of pumpkin cultivars at The University of Tennessee Ames Plantation at Grand Junction, 2001.


Cultivar

Total yield - tons/A

Pumpkins < 10 lb tons/A

Pumpkins 10-15 lb tons/A

Pumpkins 15-20 lb tons/A

Pumpkins
> 20 lb tons/A

Pumpkin average wt-lb

Gold Strike

32.4 az

2.8 b

11.4 abcd

8.9 ab

9.3 ab

12.6 a

Gold Rush

21.9 a

1.9 b

4.0 cd

4.3 bc

11.6 a

12.3 a

Aspen

29.5 a

2.9 b

10.7 abcd

9.4 ab

6.5 abc

12.1 a

Appalachian

35.2 a

2.5 b

8.9 abcd

12.3 a

11.5 a

12.4 a

Magic Latern

32.1 a

5.4 b

14.5 ab

9.8 ab

2.5 bc

12.5 a

Autumn King

28.3 a

3.2 b

7.2 bcd

8.8 ab

9.1 ab

12.6 a

Howdy Doody

27.1 a

3.8 b

12.5 abc

8.8 ab

2.1 bc

12.0 a

Mother Lode

32.5 a

3.2 b

10.3 abcd

5.3 abc

13.7 a

12.6 a

Merlin

34.4 a

6.8 b

17.0 a

7.8 abc

2.9 bc

12.0 a

Small Fruited

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hybrid Pam

18.9 a

15.8 a

2.2 d

0.9 c

0.0 c

10.5 b

zMeans within a column followed by the same letter are not significantly different at the 0.05 level of probability, Duncan’s multiple range tests.

Table 2. Yield in number per acre of different size4 classes of pumpkin cultivars at The University of Tennessee Ames Plantation at Grand Junction, 2001.

 

Cultivar

total yield - tons/A

Pumpkins < 10 lb tons/A

Pumpkins 10-15 lb tons/A

Pumpkins 15-20 lb tons/A

Pumpkins
> 20 lb tons/A

Seed Source

Gold Strike

4235 abz

666 b

1815 abcd

1029 ab

726 ab

Rupp

Gold Rush

2541 b

605 b

666 cd

484 bc

787 ab

Rupp

Aspen

4175 ab

787 b

1694 abcd

1150 ab

545 abc

Seedway

Appalachian

4538 ab

666 b

1452 abcd

1392 a

1029 a

Rupp

Magic Lantern

5082 ab

1392 b

2299 ab

1150 ab

242 bc

Harris Moran

Autumn King

3751 ab

908 b

1150 bcd

968 ab

726 ab

Rupp

Howdy Doody

4417 ab

1271 b

1936 abc

1029 ab

182 bc

Rupp

Mother Lode

4175 ab

787 b

1694 abcd

605 abc

1089 a

Rupp

Merlin

5990 ab

1997 b

2844 a

908 abc

242 bc

Harris Moran

Small Fruited

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hybrid Pam

7079 a

6595 a

363 d

121 c

0.0 c

Seedway

zMeans within a column followed by the same letter are not significantly different at the 0.05 level of probability, Duncan’s multiple range tests.

Table 3. Quality ratings of pumpkin cultivars at Te University of Tennessee Ames Plantation at Grand Junction, 2001.


Cultivar

 

Fruit color

Fruit app.

Stem quality

Fruit uniformity

Fruit length

Fruit diameter

Gold Strike

9.0 az

7.3 a

6.3 a

8.7 a

11.3 a

11.3 a

Gold Rush

7.3 a

7.0 a

7.3 a

7.3 a

11.0 a

11.7 a

Aspen

9.0 a

7.7 a

4.7 a

8.3 a

10.0 a

11.0 a

Appalachian

8.7 a

6.7 a

6.3 a

8.3 a

10.7 a

11.0 a

Magic Lantern

9.0 a

7.7 a

6.0 a

8.4 a

9.7 a

10.3 a

Autumn King

9.0 a

7.3 a

5.3 a

8.4 a

9.0 a

9.7 a

Howdy Doody

8.3 a

7.0 a

8.3 a

8.7 a

9.0 a

11.0 a

Mother Lode

7.3 a

7.3 a

6.3 a

8.0 a

11.3 a

10.3 a

Merlin

8.7 a

7.7 a

6.3 a

8.3 a

10.3 a

10.0 a

Small Fruited

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hybrid Pam

9.0 a

7.0 a

8.3 a

8.0 a

8.3 a

9.3 a

zMeans within a column followed by the same letter are not significantly different at the 0.05 level of probability, Duncan’s multiple range tests.
 

Copyright © 1999 by The University of Tennessee. All rights reserved.

This research represents one season's data and does not constitute recommendations.  After sufficient data is collected over the appropriate number of seasons, final recommendations will be made through research and extension publications.

 

 

 

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