Naked-seeded pumpkin project

flowerbug

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My seeds arrived yesterday. Thank you ever so much. This has been a raining and cool spring. Overnight temps have been in the mid 30s and I haven't been able to get out to the garden spot yet. It is now 3 feet high in blackberries. Ugh. Next week is suppose to be rain free last I checked. Fingers crossed I can get out there and dig up enough space to plant beans and squash.

dealing with blackberries is something i would not envy anyone. good luck and play safe! :)
 
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A.k.a. hull-less. The green ready-to-eat seeds are often sold in the U.S. as pepitas. There are several commercial hull-less varieties & several heirlooms, most are the "Styrian" type. Those pumpkins generally have dark green seeds in large, mostly empty seed cavities. Has anyone here ever grown naked-seeded pumpkins?

This year I am growing one variety ("Little Greenseed") originally sent to me in 2011 by Ken Ettlinger of the Long Island Seed Project. I grew it, and found it to be very unstable. After reporting this issue, Ken sent me new seed, which I grew in 2012 with the same results. There was a wide range of crosses, and only a few plants yielded completely hull less seed. However, the two best plants were OUTSTANDING. Those pumpkins were just over softball size, thin shelled, heavier than they looked - and densely packed with completely hull less dark-green seeds. Lots of seeds, and unlike the large Styrian types, very little flesh to waste.

LISP, when I contacted them, admitted that Little Greenseed was a work-in-progress, and was not completely stable. They apparently never completed this project, and their website - while still visible - has been inactive since 2012. Furthermore, no one else appears to be growing Little Greenseed other than Salt of the Earth Seeds , who obtained their original seed from LISP & admits to not having stabilized it either (their seed looks worse than mine). All the other online references to it I could find are the same age as the LISP site - so except for SotE's strain, I may have the last surviving seed for this variety.

I froze a large amount of seed in 2012, from the last year of a multi-variety naked-seeded pumpkin trial. That year working hours prevented me from hand pollinating, so all of the seed - while saved from the plants with desired traits - likely contains additional crosses (some perhaps with the other pumpkins in the trial). Hopefully, the desired traits can still be isolated... but it may require a large population to do so. To anyone who may want to take part in this project, I would be happy to provide seed & full details. This variety is well worth saving (I'll post a photo of the seeds when my phone has charged.)
Hi Zeedman,
If you have extra seeds I'd love to try to grow some out.
 

meadow

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Hi Zeedman,
If you have extra seeds I'd love to try to grow some out.
If you've not heard back from Zeedman privately, you might want to send him a private message with your address. Earlier this month Zeedman posted: "I will still send out seed to anyone who requests it (just PM your address) but my cutoff date for sending seed is June 1st."

He has recently lost his beloved wife and may not have seen your post.
 
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If you've not heard back from Zeedman privately, you might want to send him a private message with your address. Earlier this month Zeedman posted: "I will still send out seed to anyone who requests it (just PM your address) but my cutoff date for sending seed is June 1st."

He has recently lost his beloved wife and may not have seen your post.
Thanks Meadow,
I didn't read the further posts and I missed that.

Zeedman, if you see this disregard previous request, I'm sorry to hear about your loss and I apologise if I seemed insensitive in my request. I'm sending thoughts and prayers your way.
 

meadow

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Thanks Meadow,
I didn't read the further posts and I missed that.

Zeedman, if you see this disregard previous request, I'm sorry to hear about your loss and I apologise if I seemed insensitive in my request. I'm sending thoughts and prayers your way.
Here is his full post [posted May 11th], below. I could be wrong, but he seems to be saying that he would like the project to continue as planned for this year (I wouldn't normally say anything, but I'm aware of how important the project is to Zeedman). Once the seeds are back in the freezer then that is it for the 2022 grow-out. Hopefully he will see your post and respond:

Seeds have gone out today for all who requested them; my apologies for the lateness. I will still send out seed to anyone who requests it (just PM your address) but my cutoff date for sending seed is June 1st. All of the remaining seed will be placed in frozen storage after that date. Should anyone new express interest in the project over the summer, I will mail out seed again in the Fall... or they may choose to obtain fresh seed from one of the current participants.

Although my planned grow out of Little Greenseed will not happen this year, I am not abandoning the project. This is a worthwhile endeavor that has already yielded promising results. I look forward to seeing everyone's results this year, and hope to actively rejoin the project in 2023.
 

capsicumguy

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I just received a lovely surprise in the mail today -- four baggies of Little Greenseed from @BeanWonderin 's grow-out! I'd assumed they weren't coming and had non intention to bug Zeedman given the heartbreaking circumstances he's working through.

The ironic thing is that I've already planted some Styrian seeds and they're already sprouting! I think I'm gonna just rip them out and get these in, even if it's a late start. Maybe I'll pregerm them with a bit of bottom heat.

So, does anyone know if there are expectations re: keeping track of parentage and hand-pollinating/tracking/selecting a certain number per plant? I think that I have just barely enough room for one hill (two plants) per parent, and I thought I'd do two fruits per child plant. Does that seem like enough?
 

Zeedman

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Glad you were able to find seed, @capsicumguy , and thank you for your consideration. One fruit per plant is enough, each pumpkin will contain a large amount of seed.

While I may be unable to participate this year, I will be following everyone's results closely. I sent all four lines to those who requested seed from me, and recommended that all 4 be grown if possible. The question this year will be how variable each line is, so the greater the total number grown of each line, the better.

At this stage, it is still important to track & record each line separately. It is also important that all plants be "selfed" - hand pollinated with a male flower from the same plant. If enough plants of one line meet the original desired characteristics, we may want to combine equal amounts of seed from all of those plants. My hope is that at least one of the four lines will be relatively stable this year, and that about 50% of plants from all lines will have pumpkins similar to the parent. It should be an interesting year.

While my garden plans are still in limbo, I did dig up my home plots today - about 1500 square feet. I hope to squeeze in 8 plants of Little Greenseed, if I can find room not already dedicated to other things. The majority of the garden this year will be dedicated to food, rather than seed.
 

flowerbug

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if you have more than one plant of each lot pollinate one female flower with the pollen from a male flower on the other plant(s) and do another female flower with the pollen from a male flower(s) on the same plant.
 

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