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Extend the Life of Carved Pumpkins

It’s time to select and decorate pumpkins for your Halloween display. 

Select pumpkins free of holes, cuts and soft spots.  Damaged fruit tends to rot faster, ruining your fall display.  And always carry the fruit cradled in your arms - not by the stem.

Store carving pumpkins in a cool location until you are ready to start cutting. Extend the beauty of carved pumpkins by washing them with warm water and letting them dry before making the first cut.  Try leaving the top intact and scooping the insides out through a hole in the back.

Coat the cuts with petroleum jelly or vegetable oil to seal in the moisture and prolong your display. Sprinkle with cayenne pepper to help repel hungry animals.

Then give any shriveling Jack-o-lanterns a cold bath to freshen up their appearance.

And once the pumpkin rots, move it to the compost pile.

A bit more information: Take it one step further like some of the pumpkin carving enthusiasts do. Use commercial preservatives or peppermint oil to keep your Jack O’ Lantern looking its best for as long as possible.

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