Big Max

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Big Max "pumpkin" at a county fair in New York

Big Max is a large variety of squash that can exceed 100 pounds (45 kg) and 20 in (510 mm) 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 3 to 4 in (76 to 102 mm) 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 cumbersome,[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 300 pounds have been grown.[8] Individual fruits are round to slightly flattened.[2]

Best planted between two and four weeks after the average last frost, Big Max pumpkins typically become ripe 110 to 120 days after sowing. 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. They are harvested before the first light frost, when the plant's foliage dies.[9] Seedlings sometimes emerge in five to ten days,[10] though germination may take up to 14 days. Although recommendations vary, seeds are often planted at a depth of 1 to 3 cm (0.39 to 1.18 in), spaced 3 to 8 cm (1.2 to 3.1 in) apart, in hills of between five and eight seeds. Hills are spaced 5 to 8 ft (1.5 to 2.4 m) apart, and thinned to two to three plants.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Pumpkin Seed — Big Max Pumpkin". Gurney's Seed and Nursery Company. Archived from the original on October 8, 2011. Retrieved October 7, 2009.
  2. ^ a b "Big Max Pumpkin is Monster". The Spokane Daily Chronicle. May 22, 1964. Retrieved October 7, 2009.
  3. ^ "Pumpkin". Aggie Horticulture. Retrieved October 7, 2009.
  4. ^ "Big Max Pumpkin Seed". Sustainable Seed Company. Retrieved October 7, 2009.
  5. ^ Georgeanne Brennan, Jennifer Barry (2003). Holiday pumpkins: a collection of inspired recipes, gifts, and decorations. Ten Speed Press. ISBN 1-58008-535-0.
  6. ^ Vegetarian Times. Active Interest Media, Inc. October 1996. p. 44. ISSN 0164-8497.
  7. ^ Earl Aronson (January 11, 1964). "The Weeders Guide". The Hartford Courant. Retrieved October 7, 2009.
  8. ^ "Foreign Pumpkin is Top Squash at Great Weigh-Off". Toledo Blade. October 12, 1981. Retrieved October 7, 2009.
  9. ^ "Pumpkin Big Max Organic Seeds". Botanical Interests. Archived from the original on March 11, 2009. Retrieved October 7, 2009.
  10. ^ "Pumpkin: Big Max - Seeds & Bulbs". Garden Guides. Retrieved October 7, 2009.
  11. ^ "Big Max Pumpkin". Retrieved October 7, 2009.