Love trivia? Check out this list of pumpkin facts you may not have known!
16 Little Known Pumpkin Facts
- The word ‘pumpkin’ comes from the Greek word, pepon, which means a “large melon.”
- Pumpkins originated in Central America.
- Pumpkins are actually a fruit. Many people think it should be our national fruit.
- Pumpkin is also a squash; a member of Curcurbita family.
- The yellow-orange flowers that bloom on the pumpkin vine are edible.
- Pumpkin seeds taste great roasted and contain medicinal properties.
- Native Americans grew and ate pumpkins and their seeds long before the Pilgrims reached this continent. Pilgrims learned how to grow and prepare pumpkins from the Native Americans.
- Pumpkin was most likely served at the first Thanksgiving feast celebrated by the Pilgrims and the Native Americans in 1621.
- The earliest pumpkin pie made in America was quite different than the pumpkin pie we enjoy today. Pilgrims and early settlers made pumpkin pie by hollowing out a pumpkin, filling the shell with milk, honey and spices and baking it.
- Early settlers dried pumpkins shells, cut it into strips and wove it into mats.
- Pumpkin has been prepared in a variety of ways from soups to stews to desserts since the immigration of the first European settlers.
- The ‘Pumpkin Capital of the World’ is Morton, Illinois. Home of Libby’s pumpkin industry.
- The state of Illinois grows the most pumpkins. It harvests about 12,300 acres of pumpkins annually.
- The latest U.S. record (2019) for the largest pumpkin ever grown weighed in at 2,517.5 pounds by Karl Haist of Clarence Center, New York.
- Pumpkins were once considered a remedy for freckles and snakebites.
- Natural medicine practitioners have proven that consuming pumpkin seeds reduces the risk of prostate disorders in men.
Deborah Tukua is a natural living, healthy lifestyle writer and author of 7 non-fiction books, including Pearls of Garden Wisdom: Time-Saving Tips and Techniques from a Country Home, Pearls of Country Wisdom: Hints from a Small Town on Keeping Garden and Home, and Naturally Sweet Blender Treats. Tukua has been a writer for the Farmers' Almanac since 2004.