I drove past a couple of pumpkin farms in Mason this past weekend.

I went shopping for one today and found a display that changed my world forever.

I now know something that might end up being a Final Jeopardy question that I could get right.

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I was today years old when I got a headache from figuring out how many varieties of these there are.

And that technically they're not really pumpkins.

They're squash.

I guess you can call them pumpkins but in the botanical world, that word really doesn't mean anything?

Here, let me let the experts explain.

Pumpkins, squash and gourds are members of the enormously diverse Cucurbitaceae family, which contains more than 100 genera and over 700 species. Names differ throughout the world, but in the United States, any round, orange squash used for pies or jack-o-lanterns is likely to be called a pumpkin.  But the term “pumpkin” really has no botanical meaning, as they are actually all squash.  (Missouri Botanical Garden)

No botanical meaning?

They're all squash?!?

Wait, here's some more botany and science complete with visual aids.

My trip to the grocery store today for a pumpkin turned into a field trip and learning too much about all this. So I took pictures and decided to show you what I learned. Or as my teachers used to say, "share with the class".

Also, I didn't get a pumpkin. I went inside, got lost over by the salmon and lobster, and somehow ended up buying curry chicken salad and some sushi.

Never go shopping hungry. Even if it's for pumpkins. Or squash. Or...

What was I doing?

Squash. The Answer Is They're All Squash.


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