Like many households across the country, you may have carved your pumpkin(s) over the past weekend, or will do so tonight as you gear up for Halloween. Depending on your local weather conditions, an untreated, carved pumpkin can last any where from a single day to about a week.
So what can you do to preserve all that hard work you put into your masterpiece? The best way to keep a carved pumpkin fresh is to slow down the dehydration process and deter the onset of mold.
Below are ways to help keep your Halloween pumpkin fresher, for longer:
- Petroleum Jelly – Coat all cut surfaces of the pumpkin with petroleum jelly immediately after it’s been carved. Also coat the entire inside of the pumpkin with a light layer. The petroleum jelly acts as a barrier to seal-in moisture — which slows down the dehydration process.
- Use WeatherBug – Temperature, particularly heat, plays an important role in determining how long your pumpkin will last. Be sure to check WeatherBug to identify hot days and take appropriate action! On hot days, move your pumpkin to a dry, shaded area or into a refrigerator. The colder your pumpkin stays, the slower decomposition sets in.
- Bleach – After carving, get a container large enough to put your pumpkin in, then add in a bleach solution (1 tsp. of bleach for each gallon of water). After that, spray your pumpkin daily with the bleach solution. This is intended to hydrate the pumpkin flesh and kill mold-producing bacteria!
- Pumpkin Fresh – A low cost, environmentally friendly product created specifically to preserve carved pumpkins, Pumpkin Fresh impedes the onset of mold, rot and bugs and contains all natural ingredients. Just spray the inside and cut parts and let dry. If you spray too heavily, be sure to drain before drying! Pumpkin Fresh can be purchased here.
Be Prepared. Know Before™.
The WeatherBug – Earth Networks Team