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16 Little Known Pumpkin Facts

What do pumpkins have to do with freckles and snakebites? What state grows the most pumpkins annually? We have the answers!

Love trivia? Check out this list of pumpkin facts you may not have known!

16 Little Known Pumpkin Facts

  1. The word ‘pumpkin’ comes from the Greek word, pepon, which means a “large melon.”
  2. Pumpkins originated in Central America.
  3. Pumpkins are actually a fruit. Many people think it should be our national fruit.
  4. Pumpkin is also a squash; a member of Curcurbita family.
  5. The yellow-orange flowers that bloom on the pumpkin vine are edible.
  6. Pumpkin seeds taste great roasted and contain medicinal properties.
  7. 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.
  8. Pumpkin was most likely served at the first Thanksgiving feast celebrated by the Pilgrims and the Native Americans in 1621.
  9. 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.
  10. Early settlers dried pumpkins shells, cut it into strips and wove it into mats.
  11. Pumpkin has been prepared in a variety of ways from soups to stews to desserts since the immigration of the first European settlers.
  12. The ‘Pumpkin Capital of the World’ is Morton, Illinois. Home of Libby’s pumpkin industry.
  13. The state of Illinois grows the most pumpkins. It harvests about 12,300 acres of pumpkins annually.
  14. 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.
  15. Pumpkins were once considered a remedy for freckles and snakebites.
  16. 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 Naturally Sweet Blender Treats. She has been a writer for the Farmers' Almanac since 2004. Her article on herbal baths appears in the 2021 Farmers' Almanac.

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