How to harvest Pumpkins Harvesting correctly is important if you want to store the pumpkin for later use. Leave other fruit on the vine to mature, but harvest what you can before the first frost hits. Use the seed packet to get an idea of the mature color of the variety. Cut the pumpkin off the vine, not too close to the top (leaving a little stem makes it extra cute). The color of a mature pumpkin can vary according to variety; mature coloration can be orange, white, gray, or blue-gray. Be sure to note the ‘days to maturity’ for your particular type of pumpkin when planning to harvest, because they can vary by more than a month. Harvest pumpkins when they are fully colored and the rinds are hard. Sow indoors . If you notice that the vine itself is beginning to dry off and pull away from the stem — which can shrivel, twist, and become even more dry — then this is another sign that it is time to harvest. Allow it to “cure” in a warm, dry spot for about two weeks. Pumpkins harvested too early will still ripen but are more prone to rot. It’s harvest time when your pumpkin has grown to its full extent and the vines start to wither and die. There are some key steps. If the Main Vine is Dead, Harvest … For earlier crops or in cold regions sow seeds indoors on their side 1cm (0.5in) deep in 7.5cm (3in) pots of compost from mid- to late April at 18-21°C (65-70°F). Pumpkin Harvest Information. Handle pumpkins very gently or they may bruise. A mature pumpkin will have a hard, shiny shell that is not easily dented or punctured by a fingernail. The fruit is no longer receiving sap from the plant, so it’s time to cut that pumpkin or winter squash off and bring it inside. Be sure not to cut too close to the pumpkin; a liberal amount of stem (3 to 4 inches) will increase the pumpkin’s keeping time. It’s also best to harvest your pumpkins if the vines are rotting as it is unlikely for them to grow any further. To harvest the pumpkin, cut the fruit off the vine carefully with a sharp knife or pruners; do not tear. Wait until the pumpkin rind loses its shine and it’s hard enough that you can’t scratch it with your fingernail. Pumpkins are best grown from seed indoors, but may be sown later outdoors in a sheltered spot. Pumpkins last longer if you harvest them when they reach their mature color and the rind is hard. Harvest times for pumpkins may vary by 2-3 weeks in any given year based on varying climate patterns. If the Pumpkin Stem is Yellow or Brown, Cut it! Harvest; Varieties; Problems; Recipes; Sow. Beyond checking at the rind, you should also pay attention to the pumpkin’s stem and vine. You may want to harvest early if there is a chance of frost but otherwise try and leave them until they are ripe Harvesting pumpkins is tricky business. Check The Pumpkin’s Stem & Vine . How to Cure and Store Pumpkins . Answered by Claudia G. This question is grouped with. 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