(WHTM) — With Halloween now over, many people who either have pumpkins or jack-o-lanterns are probably wondering what to do with them since the holiday is over.
Here is a list of five things you can do with your old pumpkin now that Halloween is over.
Instead of throwing it in the garbage, you can compost the pumpkin. According to Forbes, worms love to eat pumpkins and gourds. They can also improve the soil of your garden. The main thing to remember is to take out and remove any paint, lights, or candles from the pumpkins before composting them.
Make it a snack for wildlife
Animals such as deer, foxes, raccoons, and chipmunks love pumpkins. You can chop up the pumpkins and throw the pieces into a wooded area or into your backyard. However, if you had a traditional candle inside the pumpkin, Forbes says to not give it to the animals, since black soot contains a carcinogen that is not good for animals. Also, you should not feed any wax-coated or paint-covered pumpkins, due to it being unhealthy for the animals.
Roast pumpkin seeds
This is for those who have whole pumpkins they would like to get rid of.
Pumpkin seeds, according to Medical News Today, are rich in antioxidants, healthy fats, and minerals. They may even boost bone health and the immune system.
Many recipe sites have ways of roasting and preparing the seeds to turn them into a delicious and healthy snack.
Donate to farms or wildlife preserves
If you are unable to put the pumpkin in your own backyard or a wooden area, check your local farm or wildlife preserves to see if you can donate the pumpkin. Forbes says that you can donate the leftover gourd to a local community garden, zoo, or farm as a compost ingredient or animal feed.
Turn it into a planter
This one is for those who are crafty, or just want more use out of a pumpkin. Succulents, pansies, and other potted plants can work as a cute pumpkin planter.
Forbes says you can hollow out the pumpkin and stick the pot directly into the hollowed-out pumpkin. You can also plant the flowers in the pumpkin by adding a weed barrier and some potting soil. Forbes also says to make sure you put it someplace dry and shaded as sun exposure will accelerate the decomposition process.