When is the Ideal Time to Plant Pumpkins in PA?
Just like in all other locations, the key to planting pumpkins in Pennsylvania is dependent on the weather. For you to provide the best growing medium for pumpkins, the soil has to reach a consistent temperature of 65°F(18°C). Steady soil temperatures usually occur about two weeks after the last frost date, which is typically in early May in Philadelphia.
Tip: While seasoned gardeners may be able to accurately gauge soil temperature by feel, a foolproof method is to use a soil temperature thermometer. You can pick one up at your local nursery.
Planting Pumpkin Seeds in the Ground
Once the soil has reached the proper temperature, you can safely plant your pumpkin seeds. As long as the earth is warm enough and you water the seeds frequently, you can expect to see them germinate about a week to ten days after planting.
Tip: If you are unsure about planting pumpkin seeds, you can also purchase seedlings. The benefit to seedlings is they are already established and strong enough to go directly into the ground.
Using Containers to Plant Pumpkins
If you live in one of the major metropolitan areas of Pennsylvania, you may believe that you cannot plant pumpkins. However, if you have a sunny patio or deck, you can easily farm pumpkins in the city.
To successfully raise pumpkins in an urban area, consider planting the seeds in containers. You need only a few items to get started:
- 10 gallon (38 liters) planting containers.
- Pre-mixed organic potting soil.
- A growing area that gets at least 6 hours of sunlight per day.
- A trellis or wire to train pumpkin vines to climb.
All you have to do is place the container in a sunny location on your patio and plant the seeds in the soil-filled pot. Water and fertilize the plant regularly, and you will have pumpkins growing in no time.
The Final Harvest
Just as in other geographical regions, pumpkins planted in Philadelphia should be ready to harvest in time for the autumn festivities. As long as you care for your pumpkin plants with the same care you provide your other garden vegetables, you will have an abundant harvest.