Big Max Pumpkin is an heirloom giant pumpkin variety that was introduced in the early 1960s. This pumpkin variety produces massive pumpkins that can grow as large as 100 lbs with a 20 inch diameter. This is a great one to grow to impress the neighbors and your fellow growers at the county fair.
Big Max Pumpkin produces long, trailing vines that grow 10-15′ long. As a result, they should be given plenty of space to sprawl. Giant pumpkins will benefit from a solid watering and fertilization program. For larger pumpkins, remove all but 1-2 fruits per vines so that all the plant’s energy can be devoted to those few fruits. While this variety is traditionally used for ornamental purposes, it has a 4″ thick flesh which tastes great and makes it an incredible canning pumpkin as well.
Pumpkins may be direct-seeded or transplanted, although we highly recommend direct seeding. To ensure a good stand, we recommend planting seeds every 12″ along the intended row. Once plants emerge, thin plants to one every 2 feet. Pumpkins can be susceptible to plant diseases like downy mildew and powdery mildew if leaves receive excess moisture. As a result, we recommend using drip irrigation on winter squash to reduce plant moisture and feed plants more effectively. During periods of heavy rainfall, using a fungicide like Liquid Copper can help to alleviate disease pressure as well.
Pumpkins are a crop that will produce a one-time harvest at the end of the growing season. They should be harvested when plants die back and the fruits obtain their full color. Stem hardness is also an indication of fruit maturity. Once stems harden, fruits are ready for harvest using a set of pruning shears. Pumpkins can be stored in a cool, dry place for several months, depending on variety and sugar content. Once fruits are harvested, remove the plants from the garden to prevent any fungal spores from overwintering and becoming a problem in future years. Proper crop rotation is extremely important with all pumpkin varieties to reduce disease and pest pressure.
Big Max Pumpkin Planting Information
Planting Method: direct seed
When to Plant: after last frost
Planting Depth: 1/2″
Seed Spacing: 18-24″
Row Spacing: 5-6′
Days to Maturity: 110
Disease Resistance: None