We’re here this afternoon at Dr. Kiki Fontenot’s pumpkin patch here at her home. Kiki, could you tell us a little bit today about the pumpkins that you’re growing here? Sure, Heather. I choose to grow pumpkins to give them away to my neighbors, actually. And I love growing them because they’re a challenging crop. So when I’m growing pumpkins, I try to grow a lot of different varieties. What I have in my hand is Orange Smoothie, but I also have Autumn Touch and Connecticut Fields — just a wide range of smaller and larger pumpkins. Why do you do that? I do that specifically in pumpkins because you never know what disaster is going to strike you. We’re very susceptible to disease and insect pressure here, so it’s important to have many different types. Right here I see that you have some chewing damage. There are some spots on a few of these. Do you ever spray for insects? I did spray Heather — early on in the season before the plants were blooming. I did use fungicides and a few insecticides then. I did not once the flowers opened, though. I quit using insecticides because bees are such an important crop. And I have two flowers here actually on pumpkins and other cucurbits. There are both a male and a female flower. Here we have a male flower. Here is the female flower where you can see the ovary that will turn into the fruit And bees are so important because they carry the pollen from the male flower to the female flower. To summarize, when do you spray? In pumpkins, where bees are so important, we would spray before the crop ever begins to bloom. Or if you absolutely have to — like if you’re getting annihilated by insects — spray in the early evening when the bees are back in their hives. Alright, so if you’re looking forward to the fall, some cooler weather, some pumpkins for Halloween and Thanksgiving, it’s going to be great. For Get It Growing, I’m Heather Kirk-Ballard with the LSU AgCenter.