Keeping Your Carved Pumpkins Fresh

A few tips to keep your pumpkin designs looking good.

Carved pumpkins look their best one to two days after carving, and without some care, rarely look good after seven days. If you want to keep your pumpkin all-natural, we recommend waiting until October 27th to carve it, otherwise, here are some tips to keeping your pumpkin designs fresh. 

• Make sure your hands and any tools are both clean and sanitized. Then wipe the outside of the pumpkin down with bleach before making the first cut.

• Once carved, you can keep your pumpkin fresh for up to a week by wiping the inside and cut areas with bleach, spraying with a household cleaning spray that includes bleach, or using one of the pumpkin sprays available in craft or party stores.

• Carved pumpkins decline the fastest in warm weather. It’s best to keep them out of direct sunlight and move them into a garage, cool basement, or a refrigerator when temperatures exceed 70°F. If your climate is humid or it is rainy, it will help to dry off and refrigerate your carved pumpkins at night. Freezing temperatures also speed decay, so move them to a protected location when temperatures outside are below freezing.

• If a pumpkin starts to shrivel or get moldy, you can soak it for a couple of hours in a bucket of water to revive it. Add 2 teaspoons of bleach for every gallon of water, for disinfecting purposes.

• To light up your carved pumpkin for more than one night, use a battery-operated candle or small flashlight instead of a candle. This will prevent soot and heat damage that could shorten the pumpkin’s lifespan.

--Advice from Botanical Interests