Get to know your pumpkins

Just alongside the tunnels is our Pumpkin Patch – home to our Pick Your Own Pumpkins event this year.

The pumpkins began their life at Westerton in the seed tunnel back in March. The weather meant much tending and care around them as they began to sprout and grow. May held things up with it’s cold blast, but eventually some very good growing plants were planted out in the field over 3 – 4 days. They have grown up now and are ready for you to take home and enjoy a warm bowl of soup with or in a pie.

There are 9 varieties planted out in the field for you to explore – here is a little help in deciding what to pick up and maybe give a try!

Jack O’Lantern is the large orange variety covering a vast portion of the field near the tunnels. They have fabulous flavour too. Delicious in soups, pies and curries.

Winter Squash ‘Marina di Chioggia’ (below) is an Italian winter squash, in fact it is a heirloom rustic variety originating near Venice. It is considered to be King of the Italian Squashes, no less! Inside it has a a rich, sweet, deep yellow-orange flesh of outstanding quality. In Italy this is popular for gnocchi and ravioli, but it is also delicious baked or in pies.

Autumn Crown (below) is bred for the UK climate. It combines the best characteristics of colour of a butternut type along with the familiar shape of Crown Prince. This variety produces a gorgeous aroma similar to that of a melon when cut. Delicious roasted and can also be used to make tasty soups.

‘Polar Bear’ (below) are the large white ones you will see in the field. They are pretty hefty! A popular decorative variety if you have the muscle!

Crown Prince (below) are a steel blue-grey skinned winter squash with bright orange dense flesh and a sweet nutty flavour. Also known as “Sweet Meat” squash it is regarded as one of the best for roasting and soups alike.

‘Casperita’ (below)  is known as a white ghostly  ‘munchkin-type’ of Italian heritage. These are lovely little pumpkins that have a sweet tasting pale flesh inside. They are also good for decoration and sit well with the orange of ‘Jack be little’.

‘Delicata’ (below) – we only have a few of these to try this year. They are unusually an oblong-shaped squash with a golden flesh, with a nutty flavour and creamy, smooth texture. Commonly referred to as delicata squash, it’s also known as ‘sweet potato squash’.

‘Jack Be Little’ (below) lives up to it’s name by producing beautiful small round orange fruits that are small enough that they make the perfect serving dish for pumpkin soup once the flesh has been used. Good fun! As a miniature variety they are great for decoration.

‘Turk’s Turban’ (below) – last but not least – and not to be missed at the bottom of the pumpkin patch – you will find the treasure that is Turk’s Turban. A real whacky variety, distinctive, and fun! They are edible too. Commonly the bottom is orange, the top end lighter with splotches or stripes of colour.

So there we have it – a full rundown of all the varieties of pumpkins and squash we have in the patch this year. Why not come along and pick one for yourself? Head to www.bit.ly/PYOpumpkins2021 for further information and tickets.