Montana State University

Learn how to grow giant pumpkins May 30 at the Museum of the Rockies

May 24, 2013 -- MSU News Service


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MSU News Service
Tel: (406) 994-4571

Montana State University Extension will host a free discussion about growing giant pumpkins featuring Montana's champion pumpkin grower from 6-8 p.m. on Thursday, May 30, at the Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman.

Emmett May, state of Montana giant pumpkin record holder and Master Gardener from Arlee, will discuss raising giant pumpkins, how they grow and how to get pumpkins to championship size. He will address topics such as space needs, propagation techniques, fertilizer requirements, and plant and root development.

May broke the state giant pumpkin record in 2012 with a giant Atlantic pumpkin that weighed 1,030 pounds. He broke his own 2011 state record of 893 pounds.

"When you find out that you can grow a pumpkin larger than anyone in the neighborhood, it makes you feel like you can grow anything," says Toby Day, MSU Extension Horticulturist and state Master Gardener coordinator. "His enthusiasm is so infectious, I even tried growing a giant pumpkin and grew a 380 pound one in my front yard. And, it wasn’t that difficult."

May grew his first giant pumpkin several years ago and has testified to being addicted ever since, Day said. May’s interest as a grower in Montana leads to his willingness to help people grow large pumpkins in their own garden.

"He will tell you just about everything. He doesn’t seem to keep many secrets because he wants others to be successful and enjoy his passion," Day said.

Giant pumpkin seeds and seedlings will be available after the presentation. Door prizes will include seedlings from one of May’s state-record pumpkins.

If you have questions about the program on May 30, please contact Day, MSU Extension Horticulture Specialist at or call (406) 994-6523.


Toby Day, MSU Extension Horticulture Specialist, (406) 994-6523 or