What are Pumpkins?
Today. We're going to talk about the domestication and radiation of Pumpkins. It's the season, right? It's time to talk about Pumpkins and it's funny because we originally did this topic about. Four years ago. Only, the recording didn't work so well. So it's taken me a little wild catch up with our guest again. So we're speaking with professor. Harry. Paris. He's a senior researcher in vegetable crops at the balcony centers. N- Avai our campus in northern Israel. So welcome to the podcast again Dr Paris Thank. You Kevin. It's very good to be here. It's good to talk to you. It was very nice to hear your voice. I'm here in Florida and were here for a while a research visitor, right? That's right. I was in Florida twice on Sabbatical wants at your campus the US campus in Gainesville another time at the campus in Fort Pierce. Two places here in that you're familiar with I'm actually out in. Archer. So I'm south west of campus. You might remember that little town that you did on the way to see her keys archer roadway isn't it from Gainesville to archer? That's right. Yeah. About about twenty minutes out of town and and and and I actually am married to a farmer who she grows pumpkins. So So this is perfect. I know a little bit more about than I did last time we talked. But we're GONNA talk about Pumpkins and so what is this thing? We call a Pumpkin? Well Pumpkin and is around fruit. And, pumpkins belong to the genus superb atop and in capita we have fruits that are edible. These are full pumpkin squash and we have fruits that are usually small and bitter and generally inedible those a cold Gorz. The around edible fruits are cold pumpkins and the fruits that are not round butter edible cold squash. That's general lingo. That's generally the way that. Talk about them you don't think about. Zucchini as being a Pumpkin Zucchini squash or a crook nick his crook neck squash. It's a squash not a pumpkin. Pumpkins our the kinds of things. You just WanNa pick in and pick up off the ground and hug. Nice round. They are edible, other also use for decoration. Well there's a couple of kind of. That we see here in Florida that seem to do better than you know the big Halloween type of Pumpkin on there's things called seminal Pumpkin Another thing that we have that leaders call it tropical Pumpkin, but these seem to do very well in the in the heat of this region. Is. There is a lot of diversity aside from the you know decorative Pumpkin that we sometimes think about. Oh, this quite a bit of diversity in the Genus Kirpa capita. We have three species that are widely distributed in cultivation round the world. We have the familiar halloween decade or Pumpkins they belong to one species cold credit to people. And then also at Halloween, you see these giant gins these belong to the species. Appropriately. Named Carpet Maxima. And then finally, we have the tropical pumpkin seminal pumpkin and squash they all belong to the third species, who Kirby tumble sculptor. And People is native to North America. That is native. It grows wild to the ancestors of all the Pumpkins and wild gourds growing in what is now the United States and Is. Worth ultimate ancestors of the. Pumpkins. Whilst. credit the Maxima the giant Pumpkins, Ankara, Demos Scotta. The tropical pump in on both very likely native to South America who it's Scotto to tropical northern part stuff America. Okay I didn't know that. So the so these are South American origin. and. The people, North American. People's our North American. Maximum. Yes. Okay and so they the if we if we focus on Maxima and focus on most gotta those are coming from South America when. who was the original domesticated and did they find these were indigenous peoples of of the Americas but what did they find useful about the Pumpkin? Okay well, perhaps each species might have been domesticated for different reasons offer more than one reason. Capital Scott I suspect I suspect I don't know. But I suspect was first domesticated for use of its fruits, probably the young roots and then the mature fruits because they. what happens in primitive or wild gourd is that they they ripe fruits midshow fruits tend to dry out and be very fibrous. whereas the young truth sal you could. Eat them if happened than up to be bitter or if you Olympian water about eight times over to. Drain Alpha bitterness. So I suspect criminal, Scotto was first. Domesticated for use of