Pumpkin Fertilizer Requirements: A Guide to Pumpkin Plant Nutrition

Whether you’re looking for the big pumpkin that will win first prize at the fair, or many smaller ones for cakes and decorations, growing the perfect pumpkin is an art form. You spend all summer tending your vines and you want to get the most out of them. It is essential to fertilize the pumpkins because they will devour the nutrients and work with them. Read on to learn more about pumpkins’ fertilizer needs.

Pumpkin fertilizer

Pumpkins are a heavy food and they will eat anything you give them. However, different nutrients promote different types of growth. When you fertilize your pumpkins, it is therefore important to pay attention to the stage of growth of your pumpkin and feed it accordingly.
Commercial fertilizers have three numbers on their packaging. These numbers represent nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, always in that order. When feeding pumpkin plants, apply three successive fertilizers, each weighed in one of these numbers, in the same order.
Nitrogen promotes green growth, which results in many vines and leaves. Apply a high-nitrogen fertilizer every week at the beginning of the growing season to produce a healthy plant. Once flowers begin to form, switch to a high phosphorus fertilizer to achieve abundant flowers. When king squashes appear, use a fertilizer rich in potassium for healthy fruit.

How to use pumpkin seedling fertilization

Fertilizer is important, but sometimes a little can go a long way. Nitrogen promotes growth, but adding too much can burn leaves or reduce flower growth. Similarly, too much potassium can sometimes help pumpkins grow and make them explode directly from their skin!
Apply your fertilizer sparingly and wait until you see the results it gives you a little before adding a lot. If you are new to pumpkin growing, a very basic and balanced 5-10-5 fertilizer applied moderately throughout the growing season is much less intensive and should give good results.

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