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Cucurbit* Head

October 30, 2007


My daughter informed me today that a pumpkin is a fruit.

As usual, I didn’t believe her.

So I looked it up.

Lo and behold. Click here. So sayeth the Farfallina!

I should learn to trust her.

And the things these teachers teach her is A-fucking-mazing.

This led me to do some research. Buckle up:

  • The top pumpkin production states are Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania and California.

  • Pumpkins are grown primarily for processing with a small percentage grown for ornamental sales through you-pick farms, farmers’ market and retail sales.

  • Around 90 to 95% of the processed pumpkins in the United States are grown in Illinois.

  • Pumpkin seeds can be roasted as a snack.

  • Pumpkins contain potassium and Vitamin A.

  • Pumpkins are used for feed for animals.

  • Pumpkin flowers are edible. Yum, probably breaded and fried!

  • The largest pumpkin pie ever made was over five feet in diameter and weighed over 350 pounds. It used 80 pounds of cooked pumpkin, 36 pounds of sugar, 12 dozen eggs and took six hours to bake.

  • Pumpkins are members of the vine crops family called *cucurbits.

  • Pumpkins originated in Central America.

  • In early colonial times, pumpkins were used as an ingredient for the crust of pies, not the filling.

  • Colonists sliced off pumpkin tops; removed seeds and filled the insides with milk, spices and honey. This was baked in hot ashes and is the origin of pumpkin pie.

  • Pumpkins were once recommended for removing freckles and curing snake bites.

  • Pumpkins range in size from less than a pound to over 1,000 pounds.

  • The largest pumpkin ever grown weighed 1,140 pounds.

  • The name pumpkin originated from “pepon” – the Greek word for “large melon.”

  • The Connecticut field variety is the traditional American pumpkin.

  • Pumpkins are 90 percent water.

  • Pumpkins are fruit. The pumpkin plant is a rambling vine that grows orange fruit.

  • The pumpkin has separate male and female flowers on the same plant.

  • They have large, dark green leaves, orange trumpet-shaped flowers, and prickly hairs on the stems and leaves.
  • Eighty percent of the pumpkin supply in the United States is available in October.

  • In colonial times, Native Americans roasted long strips of pumpkin in an open fire.

  • Native Americans flattened strips of pumpkins, dried them and made mats.

  • Native Americans called pumpkins “isqoutm squash.”

  • Native Americans used pumpkin seeds for food and medicine.

P.E.T.PU. (Pet poo) seems to be a joke, but who knows.

If you’re into pumpkin mutilation, you made change your mind after you read this.


A side note: I ‘fall cleaned’ this weekend and got a serious and inflamed rash…I have concluded that I am allergic to cleaning and forever shall remain slothlike in my attempts to straighten house and dust and vaccuum. So sayeth the rashie.

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17 comments

  1. Hilarious and educational all at the same time!

    I generally assume that anything with seeds is a fruit and that usually keeps me right.

    Fa is a smart cookie!


  2. Wow, you have been doing your homework. A+!!!


  3. HAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!

    That girl is a smartiepants! Whoa.

    And knock off the cleaning. You are giving yourself a REAL bad reputation, doing that.

    xoxo


  4. Interesting facts, and all stuff I never knew about pumpkins before. I want a ghost pumpkin, but I guess it’s kind of late to buy one.


  5. that was rather fun. hehehehe

    I just learned yesterday, that the main ingredient in pumpkin soup is butternut squash, because it taste more like pumpkin than pumpkin does.

    makes you scratch your head and go hmmmmm lol


  6. Darn right pumpkins are used as animal feed. The day after Halloween ours will turn into bunny food.
    Great facts. I loved the pumpkin picture with the beer. I wish that I could carve like that.
    We will be doing ours tonight, I might post photos if they turn out…


  7. Such an informative post! And hey, what did you clean with? I wanna be allergic too!!


  8. A lot of cleaning products make me break out in a rash if I get them on my skin. I say it’s a perfectly valid reason to put off cleaning whenever possible.


  9. I am most impressed!!

    Did she say, “I told you so” after you looked it up?


  10. Amazing what I’ve learned today!

    Love the pictures you included!


  11. Oh my God, I love those pictures!


  12. Pumpkins aren’t fruit.

    Pumpkins are sin

    Did Fa learn that on her preschool field trip? snort


  13. Yay! I love informative posts!

    I’ve got to admit, I’m guilty of not just purchasing SIX fricken pumpkins but mutilating those suckers as well! lol


  14. Yay we share the same allergy. I’m clearly allergic to cleaning too.


  15. I am glad you did not allow your daughter to trump you … we can never show them that they have the advantage!! hehe
    Happy Halloween 🙂


  16. some fantastic trivia there… some i knew and some I didn’t.
    I knew pumpkin was a fruit (in essence…like the tomato is, too)

    but, I didn’t know about the origin of pie. I would like to bake pumpkins that way and see how they turn out.
    yum!


  17. Actually, I believe that anything that has seeds is considered a fruit.

    So that leaves carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, celery, asparugus, cabbage, lettuce, spinach, broccoli, etc… as vegetables.



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