Ode to the pump­kins

Record Observer - - News - By JUDY MELVIN EDELHEIT

It is har vest time for pump­kins in Queen Anne’s County! Pump­kin is a fast grow­ing vine that creeps along the surface as a field crop. It is time to har­vest all ma­ture pump­kins be­fore a hard freeze. “Frost on the Pump­kin Time!” A light frost will de­stroy the vines and should not harm the fruit. Hal­loween pump­kins are har­vested Septem­ber through Oc­to­ber.

Au­tumn splen­dor brings pump­kins that can be seen every­where in fields on sunny days with beau­ti­ful azure blue skies and evening sun­set skies. These gourds grow on beau­ti­ful green vines in the pump­kin patch.

You can find them sit­ting on dis­play at pro­duce stands and fences, dec­o­rat­ing homes and gar­dens and ready for carv­ing jack-o’-lan­terns for Hal­loween. Pump­kins are the cen­ter­piece for fall fes­ti­vals. It is time for fam­ily tra­di­tions for a va­ri­ety of de­li­cious recipes from our kitchens to make pump­kin pie, pump­kin bread, cook­ies, casseroles, soups, toasted pump­kin seeds and more.

A pump­kin is a cul­ti­var of a squash plant that is round, with smooth, slightly ribbed skin, and deep yel­low to or­ange col­oration. The thick shell con­tains the seeds and pulp. Best of all pump­kins is food has many health ben­e­fits, rich in vi­tal an­tiox­i­dants, low in sat­u­rated fat and very low in choles­terol and sodium. It is also a good source of Vi­ta­min E, Vi­ta­min B6, fo­late, iron mag­ne­sium and a good source of di­etary fiber, Vi­ta­min A, Vi­ta­min C, Ri­boflavin and potas­sium.

Ode to the Pump­kin!

PHOTO BY JUDY MELVIN EDELHEIT

Pump­kins are har­vested in a field next to Route 301 in north­ern Queen Anne’s County.

JUDY MELVIN EDELHEIT

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