This season, the gardeners grew some incredible pumpkins!
These pumpkins were grown from organic seed and directly sewn mid summer. About 3 large beds in the lower gardens were used for pumpkin growing exclusively. The pumpkin were attacked repeatedly by pests of all sorts. The most detrimental pests were squash beetles who consumed the leaves of the young plants, hindering or even preventing growth to maturity. Once the pumpkins bore fruit, the clever groundhog found their way into the lower garden area and began enjoying our organic pumpkins. Zack, a students garden manager, spent many early mornings in the garden squashing (haha) squash beetles. They tend to emerge during the cold times of day and move slowly so this is the best time to catch them before too much damage is done.
Once the pumpkins had grown to size, residential life at Ithaca College came and collected them for a carving activity. The sustainably conscious community (SCC), located in Terraces, enjoys using garden produce in their activities and community building programs.
Ithaca College’s nutrition class Food & Society also used the pumpkins as a crop of focus. students researched the pumpkin plant, harvested pumpkins from the garden, and then oven roasted both the pumpkin meat and the seeds. Covered in spices, olive oil or maple syrup, and toasted to perfection, the pumpkin was a huge hit in the classroom setting.