Cucurbita maxima 'Big max'

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Squash
Big max
Squash Big Max.jpg
Big Max "pumpkin" at a county fair in New York
Scientific Classification
Species: Cucurbita maxima
Heirloom
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Hybrid
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Open pol
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Big max is a large variety of squash that can exceed 45kg (100lbs) and 51cm (20in) in diameter under ideal growing conditions.[1][2] Hybrid cucurbit varieties such as Big Max are not true pumpkins, but instead "squash-type pumpkins".[3] They are often bright orange in color, with fine-grained, yellow-orange flesh. The skin, deeply ribbed and slightly roughened, can grow to be 76-100 mm (3-4in) thick, making them favorable for storage.[4] The flesh has been described as good for canning and freezing.[1] However, their size often makes utilizing them for culinary uses difficult,[5] and they lack the flavor and texture present in smaller pumpkin varieties.[6]

The variety was hybridized for its size during the early 1960s.[7] Specimens as large as 135kg (300lbs) have been grown.[8] Individual fruits are round to slightly flattened.[2]

Growing[edit]

Sowing[edit]

Best planted between two and four weeks after the average last frost. Although recommendations vary, seeds are often planted at a depth of 1-3cm (0.39-1.2in), spaced 3-8 cm (1.2-3.1in) apart, in hills of between five and eight seeds. Hills are spaced 1.5-2.4m (5-8ft) apart, and thinned to two to three plants.[9] Seedlings sometimes emerge in five to ten days,[10] though germination may take up to 14 days.

Aftercare[edit]

The cultivar requires large amounts of room to grow properly, and to achieve the maximum size, it is recommended to limit each vine to one fruit.

Harvesting[edit]

Big Max pumpkins typically become ripe 110 to 120 days after sowing. They are harvested before the first light frost, when the plant's foliage dies.[11]

References[edit]

  1. a b Pumpkin Seed — Big Max Pumpkin. Gurney's Seed and Nursery Company. Retrieved 2009-10-07.
  2. a b Big Max Pumpkin is Monster. The Spokane Daily Chronicle. May 22, 1964. Retrieved 2009-10-07.
  3. Pumpkin. Aggie Horticulture. Retrieved 2009-010-07.
  4. Big Max Pumpkin Seed. Sustainable Seed Company. Retrieved 2009-10-07.
  5. Georgeanne Brennan, Jennifer Barry (2003). Holiday pumpkins: a collection of inspired recipes, gifts, and decorations. p10. Ten Speed Press. ISBN 1580085350.
  6. Vegetarian Times. Active Interest Media, Inc. October 1996. p. 44. ISBN 0164-8497.
  7. Earl Aronson (January 11, 1964). The Weeders Guide. The Hartford Courant. Retrieved 2009-10-07.
  8. Foreign Pumpkin is Top Squash at Great Weigh-Off. Toledo Blade. October 12, 1981. Retrieved 2009-10-07.
  9. Big Max Pumpkin. neseed.com. Retrieved 2009-10-07.
  10. Pumpkin: Big Max - Seeds & Bulbs. Garden Guides. Retrieved 2009-10-07.
  11. Pumpkin Big Max Organic Seeds. Botanical Interests. Retrieved 2009-10-07.
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Squash varieties
Courgette varieties Gold rush · Opal · Tondo di toscana · Zucchini
Marrow varieties
Pumpkin varieties Atlantic giant · Sugar pie
Other squash varieties Acorn (Honey bear) · Big max · Butternut · Harlequin · Kabocha · Pattypan (Yellow scallop) · Pink banana · Potimarron · Spaghetti squash · Turk's turban · Uchiki kuri