Cucurbita pepo var. styriaca – Pepita (seed)
A member of the Curcurbitaceae family, the Pepita is commonly found in its natural habitat, the supermarket (dried pumpkin seed). Freshly grown pepitas are highly superior to store bought types. This variety is hull less, they do not need to be peeled before eating. The papery coating of the seeds sheds when dry.
Besides being delicious, pepitas have many health benefits, ranging from being a high source of iron and other essential minerals, useful for prostate conditions, a good source of protein, they help deter parasites such as tapeworms and to being able to possibly help prevent kidney stones.
One gram of pumpkin seed protein contains as much L-tryptophan as a full glass of milk, making it of interest to researchers studying the treatment of anxiety disorders. Some eat the seeds as preventative measure against onset of anxiety attacks, clinical depression and other mood disorders (from Wikipedia)
Care and Cultivation
Sow Pepita seed in spring/summer or all year round in warm climates. Full-sun to part-shade. Has fertiliser and water requirements like pumpkins, cucumbers and other gourds.
Once the pumpkins are ripe (stem has dried off and colour has changed to streaky orange), the pepitas should be harvested within a week or two. Simply cut open, scoop out, wash and then allow to fully dry before storing. The pumpkin flesh is also edible, although not as sweet as other varieties.
5 fresh seeds per packet.