Pumpkin Picking Tips
Going out to a pumpkin patch to pick pumpkins, is a fun filled rite of the
Fall season. Whether you go out to a field filled with pumpkins, or get them
from a roadside stand, we want to be certain that you get the absolutely
best pumpkin for carving, decorating and eating!
When to pick pumpkins: Pumpkins are called "long keepers". A healthy,
uncarved Pumpkin, can last to Thanksgiving and beyond.
How to Select Perfect Pumpkins:
Select pumpkins that are completely orange. A partially green pumpkin might
not ripen any further.
Size is an important factor. Medium pumpkins are best for carving into a
Jack O Lantern. Small pumpkins are better for cooking and baking.
Do not pick pumpkins that are too big for you to carry, especially if you
have back problems.
Does the shade of orange matter? If so, there are hundreds of varieties,
and many different shades of orange. Some pumpkins are not orange at all.
Selecting the shape is a matter of personal preference. Some like 'em tall.
Others, like 'em round.
Often, people select shapes to fit the carving patterns they will use. Pick
your pattern before you go.
Never lift or carry a pumpkin by it's stem. The stem gives it character.
A ripe pumpkin has a hard shell, that does not dent or scratch easily when
pressing on it with a thumbnail. Do this on the back or bottom of the
fruit.......never on the face.
Examine the entire pumpkin carefully for soft spots. If you find even one
soft spot, go on to the next pumpkin.
Check the pumpkin for cracks and splits. If you find one, examine it to be
sure it is not turning into a soft spot or has mold inside of the crack.
Look for bugs and insects. Specifically, look for holes in the pumpkin, which
are indicative of insect problems.
Tip for picking pumpkins out in the pumpkin patch:
Bring a small wagon with you. It's easier to haul tired kids and big pumpkins.
Wear boots or old sneakers. It could be wet and muddy patch.
Pick pumpkins that you can carry back with you.
If smaller children are carrying pumpkins, pick smaller ones. Remember those
little arms will probably get tired before reaching your car.
Bring a sharp knife or pruner.
Cut the vine on either side of the stem. After you get it home, you can trim
off the remaining pieces of vine, and cut the stem at the perfect spot.
to Carve Pumpkins - Now that you have found the perfect pumpkin, find
out more about carving pumpkins into great Jack O Lanterns.
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