I tried growing a couple of the big types of pumpkins this year in July. I worked mushroom compost and cow manure into the soil and planted them in IRT "green" plastic mulch watered with drip tape.
Well they set fruit and the fruit reached about thirty pounds after two weeks. Then the plants got powdery mildew and died quickly. The pumpkins did keep all of the way until Halloween, but they were not what I was hoping for size wise.
When would you recommend planting giant pumpkins down here in Southern California? How would you recommend fertilizing them? What would you recommend to fight the fungus problems (I'm not opposed to using inorganic methods with pumpkins planned for jack-o-lanterns). Is there a systemic, that despite being unsafe for food production, would help me get huge pumpkins?!