Halloween traditions come in many forms. For example, many people dress up and participate in trick-or-treating. Of course, there are also parties and get-togethers to enjoy, not to mention all the spooky decorations. However, when it comes to this holiday, it’s hard to imagine not carving pumpkins into Jack-o-lanterns. But when Oct. 31 ends, it’s time to start thinking about throwing out these creations. Instead of just tossing them in the trash, there are more effective ways to say goodbye to your pumpkins.
Compost the Pumpkins
Firstly, make the most of your retired Jack-o-lantern and use it as compost. This organic plant-based item breaks down without difficulty and will be a good addition to any compost pile. However, you should first take out all the seeds. If you fail to do this, you may soon have some new pumpkins growing in your yard. Be aware that it will take pumpkins a little longer to compost than other foods. Breaking them down into smaller pieces will accelerate this process.
Secondly, burying a Jack-o-lantern is a good alternative if you don’t have a compost heap in your yard. This is also a better approach than tossing it in the garbage. When you put the pumpkin into the earth, bugs and microbes will start to break it down. Eventually, your old Halloween emblem will become soil.
Leaving It Out for Food
Local animals love to eat pumpkins. Therefore, instead of displaying your Jack-o-lantern on the porch, move it to a less visible place in your yard. Still, keep it accessible for wildlife such as birds and squirrels. These critters will go to town on the pumpkin for the next many days and weeks.
Harvest the Seeds
Before you dispose of your pumpkin properly, take out the seeds. Then take advantage of what they can offer. It may surprise you that pumpkin seeds have a lot of nutritional value. Plus, they taste great. Roast them and enjoy the seeds as a snack on a cool fall or winter day.
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Make a Treat Out of It
Pumpkins have a lot more uses than Halloween decorations. In addition to using them to make a pie, bread, and other foods, you can use your holiday Jack-o-lanterns to concoct a pumpkin puree. Cut the pumpkin in fourths and place the pieces in a baking dish with about a cup of water. Bake the pumpkin skin down for at least 30 minutes at 400 degrees. Next, take out the seeds and put the pumpkin in a food processor.
Try one of these methods this Halloween instead of throwing away your Jack-o-lanterns. You can get more benefits out of these traditional holiday elements.
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