Pumpkin – interesting fruit
Pumpkins are fruits that are commonly grown for food. It is used to make breads, soups, and pies. Pumpkins are related to squashes, gourds, cucumbers, and melons.
It is grown throughout North America and Europe. The plant has rough, heart-shaped leaves and large yellow flowers.
Pumpkins usually weigh 4 to 8 kilograms; however, the largest varieties may weigh 34 kilograms and even more. They are picked in autumn and can be stored for a few months in a dry place.
In some countries a carved pumpkin, called a jack-o’-lantern, is a familiar Halloween decoration.
Pumpkin is not only tasty but also very healthy product. Pumpkin flowers are also edible and quite successfully decorate salad or pumpkin pie. In fact, pumpkin is a berry, one of the largest in the world. Its fruits can weigh up to several hundred kilograms.
Mexico is considered homeland of pumpkin. Scientists have found the oldest pumpkin seeds which are 7,000 years old. After the discovery of America, it gradually became widespread in other continents.
There are about 800 different varieties of pumpkin, but only 200 of them are edible.
Pumpkins come in different colors: white, yellow, green, black and also can be striped or spotted.
To make one liter of pumpkin oil you need about 35 pumpkins. The oil helps to reduce cholesterol levels in the body and prevent cardiovascular disease. It is rich in vitamins A, E, and K, selenium and linoleic acid. Pumpkin seeds are especially useful for men. They contain zinc, which is responsible for the male reproductive system.
Every year, from September to November there is a festival dedicated to pumpkins in small German town of Ludwigsburg.
Pumpkins are the real champions. By the way, the biggest pumpkin was grown in Pennsylvania (USA) in 1999. It weighed 513 kg. Also in the United States there was another pumpkin record – a huge baked pumpkin pie with a diameter of 152 cm.