Multisite Evaluation of Pumpkin Cultivars in Missouri

Monday, July 22, 2013
Desert Ballroom: Salons 7-8 (Desert Springs J.W Marriott Resort )
Sanjun Gu , Cooperative Extension and Research, North Carolina A&T State University, Greensboro, NC
Catherine Bohnert , Lincoln University, Jefferson City, MO
Steven Kirk , Cooperative Extension and Research, Lincoln University, Jefferson City, MO
Tim Reinbott , University of Missouri, Columbia, Columbia, MO
The 2012 pumpkin variety trials were conducted at three sites including Carver Farm of Lincoln University in Missouri (Jefferson City), Bradford Research and Extension Center of University of Missouri-Columbia (Columbia), and the David M. Barton Agriculture Research Center of Southeast Missouri State University (Cape Girardeau). At each site, eighteen pumpkin cultivars were evaluated for yield and fruit characteristics. The varieties selected were Gold Gem, Solid Gold, Bus Stop, Goose Bumps II, Knuckle Head, New England Cheddar, Red Warty Thing, Magician, Warlock, Magic Wand, Mrs. Wrinkles, Gladiator, Lumina, Charmed, Dependable, Harvest Time, Magical, and Pro Gold. At the Jefferson City and Columbia sites, transplants were raised in a greenhouse in May and transplanted into raised beds covered with black plastic in mid-June.  Plant spacing was 2.5 feet within a row and nine feet between rows.  A cover crop of buckwheat was broadcast between the rows prior to planting. Pumpkins were harvested once in late August. Data from Southeast Missouri State University was not available so results presented are based on data from the other two locations. There were no interactions between cultivars and locations for yield and average fruit weight. Pumpkins grown at the Bradford Center had significantly higher yield and larger fruit than those grown at Carver Farm, probably due to soil type. 'Goose Bumps II' yielded the highest (20.3 tons/acre) while 'Lumina' had the lowest yield (2.2 tons/acre). Varieties that yielded more than 10 tons/acre were Goose Bumps II, Warlock, New England Cheddar, Gladiator, Solid Gold, and Harvest Time. 'Harvest Time' produced the largest (heaviest) fruit (16.7 lb.), followed by 'Gladiator' (11.8 lb.) and 'Warlock' (11.2 lb.). 'Lumina' had the smallest (lightest) fruit, about 4.4 lb. There was an interaction between varieties and locations in terms of the number of fruit. Most varieties had a similar number of fruit at both sites, except 'Goose Bumps II', 'Knuckle Head', and 'New England Cheddar', which produced much more fruit at the Bradford location. At Carver Farm, 'Goose Bumps II', 'Gladiator', 'Bus Stop', and 'Magician 'produced more than four fruit per block. At the Bradford Center, 'Bus Stop', 'Goose Bumps II', 'Knuckle Head', 'New England Cheddar', 'Warlock', 'Magic Wand', and 'Charmed' produced more than five fruit per block. Similar varieties will be tested again in 2013 and will be analyzed for variety recommendations.