Cold Damaged Pumpkin

Low temperatures on July 7, 2015 dropped into the 30s at some North Dakota Agricultural Weather Network (NDAWN) stations.  The coolest readings were reported at Ada with a minimum of 37°, Bottineau at 38° and Brampton at 39°.

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Pumpkin plants near the Brampton station showed clear signs of “frost” damage.  With an air temperature of 39° at 5 feet, could the temperature have been 32° or lower near “pumpkin level”.  In other seasons, the answer would be yes, in July with warm, moister ground? Harder to say, but a 36° is highly probable and considering the sensitivity of pumpkins to cold and the corresponding physiological changes that can occur near freezing, I would think “cold damage” would be more appropriate than “frost damage”, but either way, the picture below doesn’t show a “happy pumpkin”.

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July 7, 2015 Pumpkin Picture near Brampton, ND