Why You’re Never Quite in Charge

There’s a funny story behind this Pumpkin. Firstly, I’ve no idea what variety it is. I’m guessing it’s a Jack be Little or other small Pumpkin variety. The reason I don’t know is that it sprouted from a seed that was in my compost bin. When I emptied the compost out last Autumn I noticed that there were some Pumpkin (or possibly Courgette) seed in it, but didn’t think anything of it.

Then come Spring some of them started to germinate! I chose the strongest one and re-planted it in full sun on the other side of the garden. It flourished and became a large plant in no time at all. Then it flowered and set fruit. The only problem was I had no idea if it was a Pumpkin or a round Courgette at first. I almost picked it when it was small and green. But I decided to leave it just in case and I’m so happy I did.

Pretty soon it started to harden and turn orange. At this rate I think it will be ready in time to carve for Halloween. Yey!

I love it when you get something unexpected from the garden. Every year I end up growing something that I never intended to. And that’s part of the joy of owning a garden – you’re never quite fully in charge :) What did you grow this year that you didn’t intend to?

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24 Comments on “Why You’re Never Quite in Charge

  1. dill, taragon, chives, coriander and mint. it’s a tough one when a large proportion of your garden weeds are edible herbs and it makes me wonder if all the other weeds are as yummy as the ones I just listen. oh, and I grew potatoes without intention lol
    :-) ines

  2. I had a huge number of borage plants growing where they weren’t wanted as the seeds must have been in the compost after I composted the previous year’s growth. At least they were easy to spot and pull up though. I also managed a self seeded tomato plant (no idea what variety) which is just bearing some very small fruit – suspect as it’s so late in the season it won’t be prosperous, but free tomatoes with no work involved is fine by me, whatever number I got from it!

  3. I’ve grown a family of rats! The little blighters nested under my allotment shed, and ate my sweetcorn! Anyone got any good tips for stopping them eating the cobs? They seems to have the in-built knack of finding the ripe ones! ARGH!

  4. Scattered a package of ‘wild flower seeds’ and got all sorts that I didn’t realise qualified as ‘wild flowers’, including candytuft! Also got lots of dill, which was a nice surprise, but again, didn’t realise that counted as a wildflower.

    Congratulations on the beautiful pumpkin!

  5. Hi Chris – maybe invest in a cat – a big one? Or borrow one for the weekend :)

  6. I grew a tomatillo, although I’ve never bought seeds or plants for them. Unfortunately I only identified it after I had just pulled it out as a weed.

  7. I had some peas self seed in a pot with the wigwam still on it. That was convenient!

  8. My daughter pulled up a carrot in the driveway the other day… No idea how that grew there tho! Heh

  9. I had squash seedlings and tomato seedlings appearing all over the place this year – again from seed in my compost. Sadly didn’t have room to give any of them full reign, but they did make me smile at their persistance!

  10. I’ve had lots of herbs seed themselves all over. This is truly wonderful though – so lucky!

  11. I have had self seeded Fennel and also Gardeners Delight tomatoes but the abundance of Field Marigold, Calendula, has been a real treat in brightening up my allotment. This evening after doing an hours digging I cut some to brighten up the house.
    The pumpkin looks great!

  12. What a lovely surprise, and a fabulous little pumpkin. If you want to pass on a seed or two when you scoop them out I would love to sow one next year please.

    I’m always careful now not to put tomatoes or large pieces of potato peel (usually from the neighbour who leaves out composting stuff for me) as I had tomato plants growing all over the plot last year and the potato peel always grows some strong roots in the compost bin. So that’s why I had potatoes growing in odd places last year !!

  13. I grew celeriac plants when I thought the seeds had given up any thought of growing.

    Now they are growing into nice little celeriac’s .. But I read somewhere that they may need feeding if they are to reach a decent size?

  14. I had a TON of self seeded tomato plants, potatoes and yams as well as coriander which had thrown it’s seeds about obviously and at least 6 strawberry plants from the hulls being thrown over our upstairs balcony where we grew them last year.

    The tomatoes all got potted up and given away and the strawberries joined some new friends in their purpose built raised garden. The coriander got moved to the herb garden and the rest got plucked out.

  15. Hiya……This is no way a “JBL”………which is actually an acorn cross.its more like a “jack o lantern” “jack of all”………Probably an open pollinates cross……..Lovely tho!

  16. Hi Rancid – thanks for letting me know. I think I’ll be carving it anyway so if it’s a Jack o Lantern then all the better.

  17. What a neat surprise:) I love it when things like that happen. That pumpkin was meant to be!

  18. My whole front garden self seeded itself!

    I have a forest of giant sunflowers (really giant – taller than the guttering of my bungalow! Typical in the year that my local council didn’t run their sunflower competition!), together with an explosion of cosmos that are still flowering. The cosmos are nearly 5 ft tall and have spread over my front path – so we walk on the grass bacuse they are far too beautiful to pull up before the frost gets them!

  19. At least they were easy to detect and remove though.although I never bought the seeds and plants for them. I had squash and tomato plants were built during the year. Now I am careful now not to put tomatoes or pieces of potato skins, too.

  20. So good you didn’t pick it, I had the same with a strawberry plant which just appeared in the gap of the paving out in the garden. I carefully re potted it and had a few strawberries off it.

  21. Nice pumpkin! That’s the great thing about gardening, you never really know what’s going to pop up. (Mostly weeds.) I have a dark burgundy Peonie that just showed up in my garden last year. I don’t have any others in my yard. It made it through the winter and was beautiful this year! Nice surprise.

  22. My friend and I took on a new allotment plot this spring. We straight away covered it in some old compost from my friends bin and rather naughtily neglected it for a while. When I returned a couple months later it was covered in tomatoes and squashes, self seeded from the compost! We had a huge free crop of toms and 2 pumpkins for halloween and no maintanace or even watering!!x

  23. I was blessd with 3 lovely butternut squash from my compost pile this summer. I love these unexpected gifts.