What is "The Custody of the Pumpkin" by P.G. Wodehouse about?

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litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

“The Custody of the Pumpkin” is about a lord whose gardener quits, so he has no one to get his precious pumpkin ready for the fair.

In this silly story, Lord Emsworth finds his “particularly trying” younger son kissing a girl that turns out to be a cousin of his gardener.  When he tells the gardener he does not approve of the relationship, he quits.  Lord Emsworth is in a pickle because he now has no one to take care of The Hope of Blandings, his prize pumpkin.  The pumpkin is very important to him.

However splendid the family record might appear at first sight, the fact remained that no Earl of Emsworth had ever won a first prize for pumpkins at the Shrewsbury Flower and Vegetable Show.

They have won for tulips and roses, but nothing quite so elegant as a pumpkin.  The gardener's second in command is not up to the task, and even the pumpkin starts pining!

Fortunately, the girl's father turns out to be a nobleman and not a gardener, and Emsworth is able to get rid of the unnecessary second son.  The gardener returns and the pumpkin takes first prize!

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