Saturday, September 20, 2008
Pumpkins Facts - did you know?
Total U.S. pumpkin production in 2006 was valued at $101.3 million.
496 million pounds of pumpkins were produced in Illinois in 2005.
The top pumpkin production states are Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania and California.
The top ten pumpkin producing counties in Illinois are Tazewell, Kankakee, Mason, Logan, Will, Marshall, Kane, Pike, Carroll and Woodford.
According to the University of Illinois, 90 percent of the pumpkins grown in the United States are raised within a 90-mile radius of Peoria, Illinois.
Pumpkins are grown primarily for processing with a small percentage grown for ornamental sales through you-pick farms, farmers’ market and retail sales.
Around 90 to 95% of the processed pumpkins in the United States are grown in Illinois.
Pumpkin seeds can be roasted as a snack.
Pumpkins contain potassium and Vitamin A.
Pumpkins are used for feed for animals.
Pumpkin flowers are edible.
Pumpkins are used to make soups, pies and breads.
The largest pumpkin pie ever made was over five feet in diameter and weighed over 350 pounds. It used 80 pounds of cooked pumpkin, 36 pounds of sugar, 12 dozen eggs and took six hours to bake.
Pumpkins are members of the vine crops family called cucurbits.
Pumpkins originated in Central America.
In early colonial times, pumpkins were used as an ingredient for the crust of pies, not the filling.
Pumpkins were once recommended for removing freckles and curing snake bites.
Pumpkins range in size from less than a pound to over 1,000 pounds.
The largest pumpkin ever grown weighed 1,140 pounds.
The name pumpkin orginated from "pepon" – the Greek word for "large melon."
The Connecticut field variety is the traditional American pumpkin.
Pumpkins are 90 percent water.
Pumpkins are fruit.
Eighty percent of the pumpkin supply in the United States is available in October.
In colonial times, Native Americans roasted long strips of pumpkin in an open fire.
Colonists sliced off pumpkin tops; removed seeds and filled the insides with milk, spices and honey. This was baked in hot ashes and is the origin of pumpkin pie.
Native Americans flattened strips of pumpkins, dried them and made mats.
Native Americans called pumpkins "isqoutm squash."
Native Americans used pumpkin seeds for food and medicine.