To plant pumpkins, add compost to the soil, and amend the soil's pH as needed. Cover the soil with plastic to warm it before planting the pumpkin seeds, and plant the seeds directly in the garden. Use row covers to protect the plant until the flowers develop.
- Prepare the soil
Choose a sunny location for planting pumpkins, and work compost into the soil. Test the soil to determine its pH, and amend the soil to achieve a pH level of 6 to 6.8, and cover the soil with black plastic for one week to warm it prior to planting the pumpkins.
- Plant the pumpkins
Plant pumpkin seeds in 3-foot mounds that are placed at least 5 feet apart, and provide the pumpkins with plenty of water and well-drained soil. When the pumpkins reach 2 inches in height, thin the seedlings to three per mound. In cold regions, start the pumpkins indoors four weeks before the last frost of the season, and harden the plants before placing them in the garden.
- Protect the seedlings
Place row covers over the pumpkins to protect young vines, and use a drip irrigation system to water the roots of the plant. Remove the row covers when flowers develop to allow the pumpkins to self-pollinate.