• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com pie forums private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Anne Miller
  • Pearl Sutton
  • Leigh Tate
  • Nicole Alderman
stewards:
  • paul wheaton
  • jordan barton
  • r ranson
master gardeners:
  • Carla Burke
  • Jay Angler
  • John F Dean
  • Nancy Reading
gardeners:
  • Mike Barkley
  • thomas rubino
  • Beau Davidson

Growing Pumpkins for Hull-less Pumpkin Seeds. Any tips?

 
pollinator
Posts: 261
Location: Northern temperate zone. Changeable maritime climate. 1000ft above sea level.
131
forest garden personal care books chicken food preservation cooking medical herbs writing homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Hi Everyone,

I love eating pumpkin seeds and pumpkin seed butter (stone-ground seeds) but have never tried to grow pumpkins for this purpose.  I'm in the process of planning my new garden for when I move and this is a high priority crop for me.  

Is anybody growing pumpkins for hull-less seeds? I would like to develop my own landrace but will need to start somewhere with some open-pollinated seed.  

Are there any varieties with a known high seed-count per pumpkin? Or that are particularly high in nutrients? eg magnesium, zinc etc.

I am in a cool, wet, maritime climate.  Are there any open-pollinated seeds that you know work well in this type of climate?  

Is it worth growing any pumpkins that are not hull-less for seeds?

I would guess this be would too much work but what do you think?

Any tips would be much appreciated.

 
pollinator
Posts: 366
172
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
There is a variety of pumpkin called Lady Godiva that grows hull less seeds.  According to the legend, Lady Godiva rode naked, I guess that's why they called these hull less seed producing pumpkins by that name!!

https://www.kitchengardenseeds.com/seed-index/fruits-and-vegetables/pumpkins/pumpkin-lady-godiva.html
 
pollinator
Posts: 1030
Location: BC Interior, Zone 6-7
309
forest garden tiny house books
  • Likes 6
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
One thing about hulless seeds is they're more prone to rotting in cool, wet soil, so that might be something to keep in mind for your conditions. You might need to seed more heavily, plant a little later, grow in raised beds. If you want to develop a landrace, I'd go with seed more heavily.

Every pepo variety of squash I've ever grown has had nice eating seeds, even with the hulls on. The hulls are thin, so you can just eat them. Maxima varieties have thick, woody hulls that are unpleasant to eat, and, yeah, it's not really worth cracking the hulls off the individual seeds.

I've never heard of any varieties of hulless seeds with a particularly high seed count or vitamin/mineral content. I think they're all pretty similar.

You can also eat watermelon and cucumber seeds. Watermelons are a little fibery, but cucumber seeds are quite nice. I'm talking seeds from fully mature fruit, not picked at eating stage.
 
steward
Posts: 2935
Location: Maine, zone 5
1534
3
forest garden trees food preservation solar wood heat homestead
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
There are also varieties of hull-less pumpkins that have been bred for much better quality flesh, such as 'Naked Bear', that you might want consider for inclusion into your landrace.
 
Sarah Elizabeth
pollinator
Posts: 261
Location: Northern temperate zone. Changeable maritime climate. 1000ft above sea level.
131
forest garden personal care books chicken food preservation cooking medical herbs writing homestead ungarbage
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Olga Booker wrote: According to the legend, Lady Godiva rode naked, I guess that's why they called these hull less seed producing pumpkins by that name!!



Lady Godiva - that's funny.  Thanks Olga.

I did not know that this variety was specifically bred for pumpkin seeds.  


 
Sarah Elizabeth
pollinator
Posts: 261
Location: Northern temperate zone. Changeable maritime climate. 1000ft above sea level.
131
forest garden personal care books chicken food preservation cooking medical herbs writing homestead ungarbage
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Jan White wrote:One thing about hulless seeds is they're more prone to rotting in cool, wet soil, so that might be something to keep in mind for your conditions. You might need to seed more heavily, plant a little later, grow in raised beds. If you want to develop a landrace, I'd go with seed more heavily.

Every pepo variety of squash I've ever grown has had nice eating seeds, even with the hulls on. The hulls are thin, so you can just eat them. Maxima varieties have thick, woody hulls that are unpleasant to eat, and, yeah, it's not really worth cracking the hulls off the individual seeds.

I've never heard of any varieties of hulless seeds with a particularly high seed count or vitamin/mineral content. I think they're all pretty similar.

You can also eat watermelon and cucumber seeds. Watermelons are a little fibery, but cucumber seeds are quite nice. I'm talking seeds from fully mature fruit, not picked at eating stage.



Thanks Jan. The rotting issue is an interesting one. I think I will try some on open ground and some in raised bed to see whether there is any difference.  The soil here is pretty free draining but I suspect rotting could be a problem if these pepos are prone to that. Seeding directly is very hit and miss here so I could try heavily seeding some trays under cover and then transplanting them, plus some heavy seeding directly to compare.

I did not know that lots of the pepos had edible seeds. When you say they are edible even with the hulls on, do you mean eating them at harvest stage or even when they are dried out?

The watermelon and cucumber seed idea is fabulous.  I have already bred up a cucumber for my general conditions (under cover) that has a lot of seeds that are easy to remove when the fruit is fully mature. This inspires me to let a lot more go to full maturity to try the seeds as a crop in themselves.      
 
Sarah Elizabeth
pollinator
Posts: 261
Location: Northern temperate zone. Changeable maritime climate. 1000ft above sea level.
131
forest garden personal care books chicken food preservation cooking medical herbs writing homestead ungarbage
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Greg Martin wrote:There are also varieties of hull-less pumpkins that have been bred for much better quality flesh, such as 'Naked Bear', that you might want consider for inclusion into your landrace.



Thanks Greg. Dual purpose pumpkins would be useful.  I was thinking that if the seed-crop pepos were not good eaters I could use the flesh to feed chickens or the dog or something.
 
pollinator
Posts: 1390
Location: Southern Oregon
406
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I'm growing Lady Godiva this year. I tried last year but the ground squirrels ate them. My plan is to feed the flesh to the chickens and dogs like you mentioned. My dogs love winter squash except spaghetti squash, nobody on our property will eat them.

In my experience, whether or not you find other seeds with hulls tasty is very personal. Regardless, hull-less seeds will make a smoother pumpkin seed butter.
 
pollinator
Posts: 866
195
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've grown them for several years and am also in a cool, moist maritime climate. I use. Them for the seed oil. I think I started with seed from Territorial seed co. In the past I have started them in soil blocks and transplanted. I didn't have time or mental space for that this year so I just direct seeded two days ago in with my 3 sisters. This year I planted the "emerald naked" variety from the experimental farm network.

My plan is to see how. They do and plant a mix of their seeds and my saved seed from 2 years ago going forward. I did notice that these seeds were  much thinner. Than what I have saved
 
Jan White
pollinator
Posts: 1030
Location: BC Interior, Zone 6-7
309
forest garden tiny house books
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Sarah Elizabeth wrote:

I did not know that lots of the pepos had edible seeds. When you say they are edible even with the hulls on, do you mean eating them at harvest stage or even when they are dried out?  



Dried out. The hulls get thin and crispy. Eaten fresh, the hulls still have a bit of chew to them. And some are better than others. I've never had any I didn't want to eat, though. I seem to remember the best were from some crooknecks that fully matured in my neighbour's garden while they were away. I raided a bunch of stuff from them that year :) They usually ended up tilling half their unharvested garden under at the end of the year anyway.
 
Jan White
pollinator
Posts: 1030
Location: BC Interior, Zone 6-7
309
forest garden tiny house books
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Greg Martin wrote:There are also varieties of hull-less pumpkins that have been bred for much better quality flesh, such as 'Naked Bear', that you might want consider for inclusion into your landrace.



I'm trying out Emerald naked seeded pumpkin from experimental farm network this year. It's supposed to be dual purpose, as well.
 
Sarah Elizabeth
pollinator
Posts: 261
Location: Northern temperate zone. Changeable maritime climate. 1000ft above sea level.
131
forest garden personal care books chicken food preservation cooking medical herbs writing homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Jan White wrote: Dried out. The hulls get thin and crispy. Eaten fresh, the hulls still have a bit of chew to them. And some are better than others. I've never had any I didn't want to eat, though. I seem to remember the best were from some crooknecks that fully matured in my neighbour's garden while they were away. I raided a bunch of stuff from them that year :) They usually ended up tilling half their unharvested garden under at the end of the year anyway.



Ok, I will dry them.  The fresh ones don't sounds too appealing.

Love the raid on your neighbour's garden.  It would be shame to see the crooknecks go to waste:)
 
steward
Posts: 1614
Location: Coastal Salish Sea area, British Columbia
824
goat books chicken food preservation pig solar wood heat rocket stoves homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
We grew hull less pumpkins for a few years. It always ended up being a lot of work. In the end we would usually give them away for 1 dollar a pumpkin. People rarely wanted to buy them(the whole pumpkin). In my experience they grew to be big and would require a large knife to cut through them.
It meant about 10-15 minutes per pumpkin to get them out and washed and to remove the pulp.


When we ate them we would soak them in salted water for 1 day and than dry them in the sun or slowly on the woodstove. They than went on salads or were eaten as a snack.

The flesh was very bland, even making a curry soup wasn't great. We would give it all to the pigs.


From my perspective. We have about 12 or so spots where we can grow good squash/pumpkin plants. And to allocate about 1/3 of that space to a pumpkin which we do not like to eat and where we only end up with maybe 2 pounds of seeds. It seems like a huge waste of time for us. Especially considering all of the time planting, watering, harvesting, curing, cutting open, washing, prepping for eating. Not to mention this is happening in the fall when all of the other preserving tasks are taking place.

Hopefully these dual purpose varieties have a better return. Hopefully they are open pollinated so you can save the seed!
 
pollinator
Posts: 820
Location: South-central Wisconsin
310
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Jan White wrote: Maxima varieties have thick, woody hulls that are unpleasant to eat, and, yeah, it's not really worth cracking the hulls off the individual seeds.



I see most people have already given the same advice I would about the pumpkins, so I'm just going to address this part. If you sprout the seeds from C. maxima, mixta, or moschata, the shells come off easily. You can choose how long to let them sprout before eating, whether it's just until the shell can be peeled off or if you want to wait until the seedling-leaves open. I usually just nibble the ones I find that broke dormancy while still inside the fruit. At that stage the ones I've tried have been incredibly sweet!

 
Sarah Elizabeth
pollinator
Posts: 261
Location: Northern temperate zone. Changeable maritime climate. 1000ft above sea level.
131
forest garden personal care books chicken food preservation cooking medical herbs writing homestead ungarbage
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

s. lowe wrote:I use. Them for the seed oil.


This is also an aspiration for me if I can get a good expeller. Experimental Farm Network says that Emerald Naked is up to 40% oil - amazing.  

Stacy Witscher wrote: Regardless, hull-less seeds will make a smoother pumpkin seed butter.


Good to know, thanks. We've grown spaghetti squash and I don't think they went down too well with us either.

jordan barton wrote: In my experience they grew to be big and would require a large knife to cut through them.
It meant about 10-15 minutes per pumpkin to get them out and washed and to remove the pulp.


This is a great point to take into consideration. For the landrace project, I would be looking for thinner skins or a harvest time when the pumpkin is naturally softer. Alternatively, if they are tough skinned, they should be fine just being harvested and keep in the dry until they could be processed in batches at a later date.  

Ellendra Nauriel wrote: If you sprout the seeds from C. maxima, mixta, or moschata, the shells come off easily. You can choose how long to let them sprout before eating, whether it's just until the shell can be peeled off or if you want to wait until the seedling-leaves open.


Sprouting: what a great idea. I'd completely overlooked that possibility with moschata etc.
 

 
Ellendra Nauriel
pollinator
Posts: 820
Location: South-central Wisconsin
310
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Sarah Elizabeth wrote:

Ellendra Nauriel wrote: If you sprout the seeds from C. maxima, mixta, or moschata, the shells come off easily. You can choose how long to let them sprout before eating, whether it's just until the shell can be peeled off or if you want to wait until the seedling-leaves open.


Sprouting: what a great idea. I'd completely overlooked that possibility with moschata etc.
 



I did too. For years. Then one night I had a way-too-realistic dream in which squash sprouts had become the next health-food fad, and my bags and bags of saved seeds were suddenly worth their weight in gold. When I woke up, I did some checking, and while I couldn't find anything saying people had ever eaten the sprouts, I also couldn't find any reason not to, since the entire plant is edible, leaves and all.
 
gardener
Posts: 1537
Location: Longbranch, WA Mild wet winter dry summer
305
2
goat tiny house rabbit wofati chicken solar
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I had great success with the ones from Uprising Seeds. Because thy were fragile I started them in the greenhouse and transplanted them out to my carpet garden. Over a few years I selected for the best flesh. I like to uses the flesh as a flour so as I harvested the seeds I would spread the overrise that they are in out in the dehydrator and slice the flesh with a French fry cutter and dry them. The French
fry size would shrink to match stick size and powder easily in the blender.
 
PI day is 3.14 (march 14th) and is also einstein's birthday. And this is merely a tiny ad:
Wood Gasifier Builder's Bible, Ben Peterson --ebook
https://permies.com/wiki/137967/ebooks/Wood-Gasifier-Builder-Bible-Ben
reply
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic