List of pumpkin varieties
- Crown Prince
- Valenciano Lumina
- Turkish Turbans
- Pumpkin Hokkaido
- German Gelber Zentner Pumpkin
- Hungarian Blue Pumpkin
- Baby Bear
- Spaghetti Squash
- Muscat Pumpkin
How many types of pumpkin are there?
Estimates vary wildly from 45 to over 200! There are many more varieties than you see on offer in your local farmer’s market, although some of the less common types offer only slight differences between them. There are probably around 75 common types of pumpkins for domestic use. Types include tall pumpkin varieties, trailing and bush type pumpkin varieties.
How do I know what kind of pumpkin plant I have?
The easiest way is to compare the growing pumpkin with images – it’s the quickest way! A common error is to mistake a yellow squash plant for a pumpkin. Even when very young, a pumpkin has a much more rounded shape, which a yellow squash is tubular.
Video – 30 Types Of Pumpkins
What is the easiest type of pumpkin to grow?
The fun thing about pumpkins is that they are all easy to grow. Whether spread out across your garden on a vine-type of growth, or clustered in one location, just make sure they have plenty of sunshine and water. If the soil is above average, pumpkins will grow!
What are the best types of pumpkins to eat?
If we’re talking eating pumpkins, we’re talking pumpkin pie! The best pumpkins for pie-makin are the sweetest types. Stick with these types below and you won’t go wrong:
- Triple Treat
- Early Sweet Sugar Pie
- Baby Bear
- Small Sugar
- Orange Smoothie
- Galeux d’Eysines
- Musquee de Provence
Different Types of Pumpkin Plants
1. Crown Prince Pumpkin
Crown Prince pumpkins, or Cucurbita Maxima (Cucurbitaceae family), are best grown in winter and can be stored for a long time. Crown Prince flesh is dense and smooth with a sweet nutty flavor.
Crown Prince pumpkins won’t be found in your supermarket, but local markets all over the world may offer them. You’ll know them because of their grayish coloring.
Crown Princes grow big – so big that they are sold in wedges normally. A whole pumpkin is just too much to cook with, but they do make great soups and purees.
They grow well in any home gardens. Crown Prince pumpkins look good, are easy to grow and store and have a mild, but distinctive taste.
2. Valenciano Lumina White Pumpkin
Lumina means that this type of pumpkin has a white skin, and in fact Valenciano Lumina pumpkins have the whitest skin of all.
It’s a nice contract to have white pumpkins in your garden and, like most varieties, it’s easy to grow. After 110 days, Valenciano Lumina is full-sized and ready to eat – and they do taste good!
Some Lumina pumpkin types have white flesh that can be a bit stringy and watery. The Valenciano, however, has thick orange flesh that’s very good for making pies.
Plant in fertile, well-drained soil and aim for a pH of 5.8–6.8. Easy to grow, but watch out for mildew and too much sun after they mature.
3. Turkish Turban Pumpkin
Turk’s Turban is probably one of the most colorful pumpkin names. It’s easy to see why Turkish Turbans are so called with one glance at the image! The underside of the pumpkin is often orange and striped, making a great splash of color in the garden.
The flesh is yellowish and they are difficult to peel. A good tip is to dip them into boiling water for just a few minutes – then the peel just comes away quite easily.
Growing Turkish Turban pumpkins is much the same as most pumpkins. They are easy to grow and mature after around 120 days.
It isn’t really bought for cooking, although it’s flesh does lend itself to puree and roasting. Turkish Turbans are so colorful, they are purchased for decorations, for hanging in the garden or on the porch.
4. Pumpkin Hokkaido (Hokkaido Squash)
Like Turkish Turbans (and a lot of pumpkins!) Hakkaido squash are very difficult to peel, so soaking in hot water is recommended again. The flesh is particularly nice as a soup, or roasted with strong spices.
Hokkaide flesh is nourishing and contains many vitamins, which means it need a rich soil to prosper. While growing, look out for snails and make sure the fruit isn’t resting in overly damp ground.
There are in turn 4 main varieties of Pumpkin Hokkaido:
Red Kuri, or Uchiki Kuri, is probably the most common Hokkaido in home gardens and markets. This pumpkin has orange flesh and a beautiful red peel. It has a sweet taste, a little nutty, with floury aftertaste
Maina di chioggia can weigh of up to 20 lbs and can be stored up to 9 months in dry conditions.
Kuri Kabocha is a green pumpkin with a ribbed surface bright yellow pulp. This variety grows to around 7 to 10 pounds.
Yukigeshou has a gray-marbled shell and is often used for decoration purposes. It’s flesh is firm and fragrant.
5. German Gelber Zentner Pumpkin
Gelber Zentner Pumpkin originated in Germany and were very common for feeding animals, particularly pigs. It’s flattish rather than rotund, with not-very-tasty flesh that is rather stringy.
In fact, the flesh is course and a bit fibrous, so not great eating for humans. This pumpkin bush plant grows easily, maturing in about 100 days, but isn’t very popular because of it’s low quality flesh.
6. Hungarian Blue Pumpkin
One of the large pumpkin varieties, this winter variety normally has a misty blues peel coloring, but can be quite bright blue. Extending across the garden on long vines up to 10 yards long, the fruit can weigh up to 20lbs.
The Hungarian Blue pumpkin can be sown indoors if it’s too frosty outdoors, but if the last frost ha passed, then by all means plant it outdoors. These pumpkins will store up to 6 months.
The sweet flesh of Hungarian Blues is perfect for all types of deserts, baking into scones and cakes, for example. It also works well blended with herbs and spices – experiment with spicy pumpkin-based sauces for savory dishes.
7. Baby Bear Pumpkin
Baby Bear pumpkins, or Cucurbita pepo, are about half the size of regular pumpkins, so great for decorations and for kids to hollow out. Of course, they’re good for eating too!
Bake in pies or roast and you won’t be dissapointed. The dried or roasted seeds make a healthy snack – much better for your kids than sweets or chocolate.
Growing Baby Bear Pumpkins is Easy, like most pumpkin varieties, taking 105 days to maturity. Aim for the gourds to be ready just before fall. They like nutritious soil and are quite robust, but watch out for mildew and pests such as cucumber beetle.
8. Spaghetti Squash
Originating in Mexico, the Spaghetti Squash rambles over the ground on vines and produces mature fruit much quicker than many varieties, in about 60 days or so. It’s more tubular than rotund, but has a regular shape unlike a traditional butternut sqauash, for example.
It should be cooked slowly after being cut in half – they have been known to explode if microwaved whole!
After cooking, you’ll notice that the flesh has seperated into spaghetti-like strands, hence it’s name. Use a fork to tease these away from the shell. Mix with cheese and spices for a delicious treat that is low on carbs and high in fiber.
They are best planted directly into compost and make sure you plant a few, as successful growth depends heavily on good pollination by bees. Spaghetti squash don’t store as long as many other types of pumpkins, so best used first before your other varieties. You can read all about growing Spaghetti squash here.
9. Muscat Pumpkin
One of the more common pumpkin varieties, Muscat pumpkins can be grown year round and are easy to cultivate. Reaching a weight of 15 to 20 lbs they are a great candidate for baking into pies, making purees or roasting. The seeds can be eaten as a dried snack, too.
These pumpkins are chock-full of vitamins, low in carbs and can be stored for 9 months or so. You’ll find them in markets all over the world, but particularly in countries where the summer’s are longer, giving the gourds time to develop and ripen.
Muscat pumpkins are grown commercially in Portugal, France, South Africa and many other long-summer locations. You can find a full article on them here.
Resources relating to pumpkin types: