How to dry out a pumpkin after carving

How to dry out a pumpkin after carving


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There’s nothing worse than carving a masterpiece into a pumpkin only for it to decay in a few days. Pumpkin carving competitions have well and truly begun but Halloween is another five days away. Don’t worry, you can extend the life of your carved pumpkin with these five tips.

Bleach it

Bleaching your hair was a trend throughout lockdown, and now it’s time to bleach your pumpkin.

Before or after carving the pumpkin, use bleach and water to clean it.

Make sure there are no guts, seeds or innards still inside by scooping them out from an opening at the bottom if you haven’t already.

Mix together a solution made up of a tablespoon of bleach per litre of water.

Use it to clean the insides of the pumpkin in order to get rid of bacteria, dirt, and stop the pumpkin from going mouldy.

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Fan it

Use a towel and a fan to fully dry your pumpkin before displaying it.

The wetter your pumpkin is inside, the more likely it is to host bacteria and grow mould.

Gently dry the insides out with a towel or kitchen roll and then leave it to sit in a dry area with the windows open.

Use a fan set on low speed to dry out the pumpkin even more.

Whatever you do, don’t use a hairdryer or leave the pumpkin outside, this will make it decay more quickly.

Moisturise it

Keeping the edges of the pumpkin moisturised rather than drying them out will prevent the pumpkin from decaying and shrivelling.

This means your pumpkin will look freshly-carved for a longer time.

The easiest way to do this is to coat the edges in Vaseline or another lip balm which contains petroleum jelly.

Alternatively, use vegetable oil or olive oil to hydrate your pumpkin.

If you don’t have any of these at home, you could make sure the existing moisture stays put with other products.

For example, try using clear nail varnish or white glue.

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Soak it

Giving your pumpkin an ice bath in a large bucket will extend its life.

Submerge the pumpkin in freezing water for about two hours, and add a teaspoon of bleach to the water to kill mould.

Alternatively, use this trick when your pumpkin has been displayed for a while and starts to look shrivelled.

Let the pumpkin dry, or dry it in front of a fan or with a towel.

Then, apply products to keep the pumpkin looking fresh.

You could try Vaseline, oil, or clear nail polish.

Spray it 

Use peppermint soap to dry out the pumpkin.

Mix together some soap and peppermint oil and put it in a spray bottle.

Give your pumpkin a spritz every day inside and out.

This will keep it fresh and prevent mould from growing.

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