Production of pumpkin

General Information

It is a popular vegetable crop in India which is grown in rainy season. It is also known as "HalwaKaddu” or “Kaddu” in hindi and it belongs to cucurbitaceae family. India is the second largest producer of pumpkin. It is used for cooking purpose and is used to make sweets. It is good source of Vitamin A and potassium. Pumpkin helps to boost eye vision, lowers blood pressure and has antioxidant properties. Its leaves, young stems, fruit juice and flowers contain medicinal properties.

Climate

  • Season

    Temperature

    25-28°C

Soil

It requires loamy soil having good drainage system and is rich in organic matter. Soil pH of 6-7 is optimum for pumpkin cultivation.

Popular Varieties With Their Yield

Hybrid varieties:

PPH-1:
Released in 2016. Extra early maturing variety. They have dwarf vines, short internodal length and dark green color leaves. It contains small fruits which are round in shape. The fruit is mottled green in color when immature and at maturity stage it becomes mottled brown in color. Fruit contains golden yellow color flesh. It gives an average yield of 206qtl/acre.

PPH-2
: Released in 2016. Extra early maturing variety. They have dwarf vines, short internodal length and green color leaves. It contains small fruits which are round in shape. The fruit is light green in color when immature and at maturity stage it becomes smooth brown in color. Fruit contains golden yellow color flesh. It gives an average yield of 222qtl/acre.

Punjab Samrat (Released in 2008): They have medium long vines, angular stem and dark green color leaves. It contains small fruits which are round in shape. The fruit is mottled green in color when immature and at maturity stage it becomes pale brown in color. Fruit contains golden yellow color flesh. It gives an average yield of 165qtl/acre.

Other state varieties:

CO 2
: Released in 1974. The average weight of each fruit is 1.5-2kg. The fruit contains orange color flesh. It gives an average yield of 100qtl/acre. The variety gets mature in 135 days.

CO1, ArkaSuryamukhi, PusaViswesh, TCR 011, Ambilli and ArkaChandan are the important varieties of Pumpkin.
 

Land Preparation

Well prepared land is required for pumpkin farming. To bring the soil to fine tilth, ploughings with local tractor is required.

Sowing

Time of sowing:
February-March and June-July is an optimum time for seed sowing.

Spacing:
Sow two seeds on per hill and use spacing of 60cm. For hybrid varieties, sow seeds on both side of bed and use spacing of 45cm.

Sowing depth:
Seeds are sown 1 inch deep in the soil.

Method of sowing:
•    Direct sowing

Seed

Seed rate:
Seed rate of 1kg seed is sufficient for one acre land.

Seed treatment:
Treatment with Benlate or Bavistin @2.5 gm/kg of seed is used to cure from soil borne diseases.
 

Fertilizer

Fertilizer Requirment (kg/acre)

NITROGEN PHOSPHORUS POTASSIUM
40 20 20

 

Nutrient Requirement (kg/acre)

UREA
SSP MOP
90 125 35


Application of well rotten FYM@8-10tonnes/acre is used before preparation of beds. Fertilizer dose of Nitrogen @40kg/acre in the form of urea @90kg/acre, Phosphorus @20kg/acre in the form of SSP@125kg/acre and Potassium @20kg/acre in the form of MOP@35kg/acre is added. Nitrogen dose is applied in 2 equal splits. First half dose is applied before sowing and then remaining dose of nitrogen is applied as top dressing within one month.

Weed Control

To control the weeds, frequent weeding or earthing up operation is required. Weeding is done with the help of hoe or by hands. First weeding is done after 2-3 weeks of seed sowing. In total 3-4 weedings are required to make the field weed free.

Irrigation

Proper irrigation at proper intervals of time is required. Immediate irrigation is required after seed sowing. Depending upon the season, subsequent irrigations at the interval of 6-7 days is required. In total 8-10 irrigation are required.

Plant protection

Aphids and Thrips
  • Pest and their control:

Aphids and Thrips: They suck the sap from the leaves resulting in yellowing and drooping of leaves. Thrips results in curling of leaves, leaves become cup shaped or curved upward.
If infestation is observed in field, to control spray the crop with Thiamethoxam@5gm/15Ltr of water.

Pumpkin Flies

Pumpkin flies: They cause sunken brown color spots on fruits and white maggot gets develop on the fruit.
Foliar application of Neem oil @3.0% is given to cure the crop from fruit fly pest.

Powdery Mildew
  • Disease and their control:

Powdery mildew: Patchy, white powdery growth appears on upper surface of leaves also on main stem of infected plant. It parasitizes the plant using it as a food source. In severe infestation it causes defoliation and premature fruit ripening.
If infestation is observed take spray of water soluble Sulphur@20gm/10Ltr of water 2-3 times with interval of 10 days.

Drowny Mildew

Downy mildew: Caused by Pseudopernospora cubensis. Symptoms are mottling and purplish color spots are seen on lower surface of the leaves.
If infestation is observed, 400gm Dithane M-45 or Dithane Z-78 is used to get rid of this disease.

Anthracnose

Anthracnose: Anthracnose affected foliage appears scorched appearance. 
As a preventive measure, treat seed with Carbendazim@2gm/kg of seed. If infestation is observed in field, take spray of Mancozeb@2gm or Carbendazim@3gm/liter of water.

Wilt

Wilt: Root rotting is a result of this disease. 

If infestation is observed then drenching with M-45@400gm mixed 100ltr of water is done.

Harvesting

Harvesting is mainly done when skin of the fruits turns pale brown in color and the inner flesh becomes golden yellow in color. Mature fruits having good storage capacity therefore they can be used for long distance transportation. Harvesting of immature fruits is also done for sale purpose. 

Seed production

Keep isolation distance of 1000m for foundation and 500m for certified seed production from other varieties of pumpkin. Remove diseased plants from field. When fruits are mature i.e. they changes their color into dull. Then they are crushed with hands in fresh water and then separate seeds from pulp. Seeds which are settled in bottom are collected for seed purpose.