Halloween is officially over, but do you know what’s even scarier than ghosts and ghouls? That decomposing jack-o-lantern on your front porch. Rather than throwing your fuzzy gourds into the trash, use one of these more eco-friendly methods to dispose of your spooky decorations.
Compost or bury them
If you have a compost pile at your house, pumpkins can go right in! This is the best option for carved pumpkins, but if you have whole pumpkins, you should remove the seeds first or you might end up with a pumpkin patch in your compost pile. If you don’t have a compost pile, but you do have a spacious backyard, you can simply bury your carved pumpkin to recycle those nutrients back into your land. Community gardens may also be willing to accept your pumpkins for their compost pile.
Feed neighborhood friends
If you live in an area with active wildlife, you can cut up and scatter your pumpkins in your yard for deer, squirrels, and rabbits to enjoy. If you don’t have a yard, call your local state park or open space to get permission to scatter pumpkins on public lands. Pumpkins also make a good snack for chickens, so if you know someone with a coop, they might be willing to take your scraps.
Donate them to a zoo
Many zoos accept pumpkins as a nutritious and entertaining snack for animals like big cats and bears.
What about the seeds?
If you do end up scraping seeds out of your old pumpkins, dry them and put them in your birdfeeder for the local feathered friends to enjoy. This is a good tip to keep on hand as we carve out baking pumpkins for pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving as well.