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Pumpkin TreeSolanum Integrifolium is the Latin name for what is sometimes known as the Pumpkin Tree*. The nickname couldn’t be more appropriate; just look at those beautiful little “pumpkins”! Cuttings from this plant make gorgeous decor items for Autumn or Halloween and can be used in centerpieces, as ornaments on a Halloween tree, or on their own.

I’ve been seeing these for sale a lot recently at places like Trader Joes, farmers markets, and a few grocery stores. When I did a little research about them I found out why: San Diego County (where we are located) is where most of them are grown, due to the mild desert climate. Cut branches, adorned with the bright orange faux pumpkins, are becoming popular in fall flower arrangements, so you might be able to find them at a florist if you are not in southern California.

Pumpkin TreeLike the Latin name suggests, the Pumpkin Tree is a member of the solanum family, which includes the likes of potatoes and eggplants. As you might infer, this means the little pumpkin shaped fruits are quite different inside than their namesake. Inside it resembles a pepper, with loose seeds and a mild peppery taste. However, westerners tend not to like the flavor and prefer to use it ornamentally. In Asian cooking, the tiny “pumpkin” peppers are more popular.

I tried to find an online retailer of the Pumpkin Tree, but came up empty handed. Seeds are available, but no mature plants or cuttings. If you know where to buy Pumpkin Trees online, please let us know in the comments!

*Other names this plant is known by are Chinese scarlet eggplant, Japanese golden eggs, ruffled tomato and tomato eggplant

Posted on October 3rd, 2006 in
Halloween Decor by Lauren

9 Responses to 'Pumpkin Tree: tiny decor pumpkins'

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  1. Jeannie said:

    Thanks for sharing. I wondered if these were genetically modified creations. I’d never seen them before until I bought a bundle at Trader Joes.

    on October 25th, 2012

  2. Elizabeth Anderson said:

    My pumpkin tree was given to me as a seedling by the daughter of one of my patients who had passed away. Mr. Cook (as the plant became know as) was fasinated by the orange pumpkins. So they bought it at the local QFC and enjoyed it untill his passing a month or so later. His daughter planted the pumpkins not knowing what they would do. They sprouted. She gave it to me as a reminder of her father just as I was moving from Seattle, Wa back to Spokane, Wa in May 2011. I watched Mr. Cook grow and flurish threw the summer, from green to orange. So for future referance these plants grow very well in the Spokane Summer weather. I am going to cut him down and say good by to Mr. Cook for the winter, replant one or more of his pumpkins and I will see him again come spring.

    on October 24th, 2011

  3. Tif said:

    I found my lil pumpkin tree at Trader Joe’s today, couldn’t resist it!!! I live in Boston, so they’re for sale from coast to coast. I even sing ‘Oh pumpkin tree, Oh pumpkin, Oh pumpkin tree I love you’… hahaha… it’ll bring seasonal joy to any home!

    on October 19th, 2010

  4. Karen Porter said:

    I bought these pumpkin seeds this spring at Fleet Farm supply store. I started the seeds indoor then transferred them outside to containers and pots. I had great success and will save the seeds for next year and share with my garden group. They are very cool and can be dried.

    on October 18th, 2010

  5. Penny Ball said:

    Almost any florist can get them in through their wholesaler, I know this because I am a wholesaler. Place an order for them about a week and a half before you need them, and it really shouldn’t be a problem. Shouldn’t be too expensive, either.

    on September 30th, 2010

  6. brittany said:

    You can find them at wholefoods too for 5.99 a bunch.

    on September 20th, 2010

  7. jeanne Kimmick said:

    I walked into the Trader Joe’s in Medford, NJ and thought that the branches with pumpkins were plastic…well, no, they weren’t! They are so, adorable and unique…I have never seen anything like them ever! Be warned they have thorns on them, but otherwise they are so different, nobody who has come into my home has ever seen them before…I just hope that we can get some seeds from the little pumpkins and grow some for ourselves! So Autumnal (sp?) just great…sorry I didn’t buy more when I was out there!

    on September 17th, 2010

  8. Susie said:

    Love this item – a friend brings to me every year and everyone in my office comments – wanting to know what it is. It is so unusual and very appropriate for the season ! Thank you TJ

    on October 20th, 2009

  9. Rita Elliott said:

    You have probably already found this but pumpkin tree is for sale here:


    on March 4th, 2009

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