THE TALON

Leftover Pumpkins? Here is What You Can do With Them.

People have become increasingly creative in how they utilize their pumpkins after their expiration date.

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Halloween is long gone, and while the spooky decorations may have disappeared, countless pumpkins are still lurking. Though jack o’ lanterns have a long history, they have a very short expiration date. The tradition of carving these orange gourds began in Ireland where people used them to ward off evil spirits. After this tradition caught on in America, pumpkin patches and jack o’lanterns became a staple of Halloween. Choosing the perfect pumpkin and carving it to perfection is a classic way to get into the Halloween spirit. In recent years, people have taken their pumpkin carving to the next level, creating intricate designs and structures with their pumpkins. Similarly, people have become increasingly creative in how they utilize their pumpkins after their expiration date.

From cooking to creating bird feeders, pumpkins can be used in a variety of ways after Halloween. One of the most enjoyable uses of a pumpkin is to incorporate it into food. A few popular recipes circulating the internet are for pumpkin puree and pumpkin butter. However, one of the easiest ways to use a pumpkin in cooking is to roast the seeds. Not only do roasted pumpkin seeds taste delicious, but they are also a great way to get a daily dose of iron, fiber, and magnesium. But if you don’t like the flavor of pumpkin, there are still a few options left for how you can utilize your pumpkin after Halloween. Believe it or not, a pumpkin can be used to create a bird feeder. Thanks to a how-to guide created by Martha Stewart, you can create an outside oasis for birds in a few easy steps.

One of the most well known ways of getting rid of pumpkins is pumpkin chucking. This involves the use of a catapult to throw a pumpkin into the air. This activity has become so popular there is now a World Championship for pumpkin chucking. Whether for fun or for a competition, pumpkin chucking is sure to make the most of your pumpkin even after Halloween.

Though pumpkins can be used for a short amount of time after Halloween, they will not last forever and are bound to be thrown away. However, pumpkins are over ninety percent water and when placed in a landfill pose a risk of contaminating groundwater. Most people are unaware of this and throw away their pumpkins; however, many people have begun to dispose of them by placing them in a compost. Composting pumpkins can add rich nutrients to soil. New initiatives to eliminate pumpkins from landfills and use them for enriching the environment have been on the rise and can easily assist those looking to compost their pumpkin.

So next time you purchase a pumpkin, enjoy it while it lasts– but when it begins to rot, remember to compost it and not send it to the landfill. 

 

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