If planting vegetables was on your to-do list last spring, I hope it included pumpkin.
As the leaves change to deep auburn red, the air catching a cold familiar nip, we are reminded that soon it will be time to plan for that old spooky holiday which comes every October 31st. What kind of costumes the kids would like to wear, whether or not someone should stay home to pass out candy and what kind of decorations should liven up the occasion, are all things we are thinking about right now.
If your vegetable patch includes pumpkin, or even if it doesn’t, here are some fun and creative ideas to take advantage of this year’s harvest.
We are pumped for pumpkins
Native to North America, nearly everything about pumpkins are edible, even the shell. Pumpkin pie, of course, is a favorite staple on Halloween and Thanksgiving; they can even be made into soups and purees. Roasted pumpkin seeds are a favorite snack and are great when packed in the kids’ lunchboxes. And let’s not forget all the vitamins packed in these cute little vegetables.
Planting pumpkin in a vegetable garden serves more purposes than just healthy soup and desserts. Pumpkins are fun to use in art projects and home decor. There are numerous designs and themes for pumpkins and jack-o-lanterns, they do not have to be traditional or spooky.
Here are some fun ideas that both kids and adults will love:
Neat Words – After painting a pumpkin grey or black, press sticky letters to the outside to share your favorite quote or verse. This is an easy craft idea that doesn't involve sharp tools.
Thumbtack Message – Another idea is to construct a message on the pumpkin by structuring tacks after the pumpkin is entirely painted. You can say “Boo!”, “Trick or Treat”, “Happy Halloween” or anything you want.
Drilled Image Pumpkin – This is a design that is created by drilling many holes in the pumpkin. It is a bit like the game connect-the-dots. Use a drill to make an image and then watch that image illuminate when you place a candle inside the pumpkin.
Table Centerpiece – Hollow-out a pumpkin and insert a dried flower arrangement. This makes the perfectly festive centerpiece.
Candy Dish - If you like candy even more than flowers, then hollow-out a pumpkin and place a cloth napkin or brown paper bag inside the shell, with edges draped over the top. Fill with your favorite candies.
Little Candle – A perfect Halloween gift for Grandma’s table is the little candle, which is made by carving out a hole in a very small pumpkin, remove the top and place a candle inside.
Painted Pumpkin – An oil-based paint will usually stick to the outside of a pumpkin. Paint a funny face, a word, or one letter on each pumpkin. Then spray with shellac to keep it from rotting for several weeks.
Halloween Fireplace – If you have a fireplace, one spooky project is to fill it with jack-o-lanterns of various designs, all which are lit up by candles. You can also place candles on the sides of the fireplace, crafting an eerie image.
We hope you are as excited as we are about planting vegetables...and now reaping the pumpkin harvest. If you didn’t plant a pumpkin patch this year, there is always next year. Contact us at Environmental Construction Inc. for help with planting your spring vegetable garden and growing pumpkin.
We hope your October is full of pumpkin-related activities and spooky fun!