Pumpkins, as mentioned in the Habitat section, need an abundance of water and nutrients to grow properly. With a proper fertilizer, such as manure, nutrients can be evenly dispersed in the soil for the plants to have easy access to through the roots. Manure contains numerous nutrients, including nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, copper, zinc, and boron. Depending what the animals are fed, there may be others present in the manure. The carbon, hydrogen and oxygen the plant needs is provided in water absorbed by roots and carbon dioxide gas taken in through the stomata.
Pumpkins require large amounts of water to grow properly. The roots reach deeply into the ground constantly searching for more water. When growing pumpkins, the soil should never be completely dried out. Once absorbed in the roots, the water is transported up the rest of the plant through the xylem. Water's cohesive and adhesive properties allow it to move up the plant.
Water should only be added to the soil. Water poured on the leaves or fruit promotes conditions perfect for fungi and bacteria. Garden hoses, watering cans, and underground soaker hoses are just a few ways to avoid moisture being left on the leaves and fruit.
The large leaves allow the plant to collect more sunlight (further explained in Adaptation). The photons of radiant energy excite electrons in the chloroplasts, which triggers the start of photosynthesis.
The water (H2O), carbon dioxide (CO2), and energy from sunlight allow the plant to undergo photosynthesis, the process by which it produces the sugars it needs for energy. During photosynthesis, oxygen gas (O2) is also produced. The following figure shows the process of photosynthesis in a leaf.
Plants use this energy throughout their life cycle and to reproduce. Find out how here!