Farmers Almanac
The Farmers Almanac
BUY The 2018 Almanac NOW!

How to Pick the Perfect Pumpkin

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Add to Google+ Share on Pinterest Subscribe by Email Print This Post
How to Pick the Perfect Pumpkin

Halloween is not far away, which means it’s almost time to start carving those pumpkins. What type of pumpkin makes the best Jack-O-Lantern? Before heading to the pumpkin patch or farmers’ market, take a minute to read these helpful hints to be sure you take home the perfect pumpkin.

  • The first step to finding the right pumpkin is deciding on the design you want to carve. Depending on the size and shape of your design, you may need a tall narrow pumpkin or a short round one.
  • Smaller pumpkins are suitable for carving simple traditional Jack-O-Lantern faces.
  • Medium sized pumpkins are good selections for most stencil patterns.
  • For more intricate and elaborate designs, you may want to choose a larger pumpkin so it will be easier to carve.
  • A pumpkin with a smooth surface will give you the best working canvas.
  • The pumpkin should be flat on the bottom so it will not roll.
  • Avoid pumpkins with scratches, nicks, cuts, and dents unless they will enhance your design.
  • Pass up pumpkins with bruises since these will decay faster.
  • Lighter colored pumpkins are normally softer, making carving easier.
  • Look for a ripe pumpkin with a sturdy stem. Do not carry the pumpkin by its stem to avoid breaking it. If the stem does break off, it can be patched back using toothpicks. If your perfect pumpkin is missing its stem, instead of carving out a lid on top, simply carve out the bottom. Place a candle on the carved out section, and then set the pumpkin over it.

Check out these tips for making your Jack-O-Lantern last longer!

Articles you might also like...


1 chellemac333 { 10.29.14 at 10:03 am }

Thanks for the info. Did you know that rubbing petroleum jelly on the surface of the carved areas will preserve the pumpkins natural vitamins and minerals preserving it longer? It works.

2 Jerry { 10.20.10 at 2:30 pm }

Sounds good… I didn’t know about the color difference. That’s to look for when carving.. Thanks!

Leave a Comment

Note: Comments that further the discussion of the above content are likely to be approved. Those comments that are vague or are simply submitted in order to promote a product, service or web site, although not necessarily considered "spam," are generally not approved.

If you notice a hole in the upper left-hand corner of your Farmers' Almanac, don't return it to the store! That hole isn't a defect; it's a part of history. Starting with the first edition of the Farmers' Almanac in 1818, readers used to nail holes into the corners to hang it up in their homes, barns, and outhouses (to provide both reading material and toilet paper). In 1919, the Almanac's publishers began pre-drilling holes in the corners to make it even easier for readers to keep all of that invaluable information (and paper) handy.

Spring Is Here – Sign Up Today!

The Farmers' Almanac is a gardener's best friend. Get 365 days of access to our online weather and gardening calendars + a copy of the 2017 Almanac
for only $13.99 $11.99!

Subscribe Today »