We love getting in the spirit of fall and Halloween by buying lots of pumpkins and planning how we will carve our Jack O’Lanterns. Sometimes, we just can’t resist the kids when they beg to carve a pumpkin or two way ahead of Halloween. Unfortunately, when we set our carved Jacks outside in our often warmish Georgia fall too early, we suffer the consequences: a Jack O’Lantern that looks more like a large orange prune than a pumpkin.
Happily, the fine art of Jack O’Lantern preservation has become well known in recent years. In case you aren’t up on it, here are some tips, including a few suggestions for enlisting your HVAC system to help in pumpkin preservation.
1. Choose pumpkins that feel hard to the touch. Make sure they don’t have any dark spots on top — a sign of frost damage.
2. Keep your pumpkins indoors, especially in warm weather. If temperatures happen to be between 55-65 degrees, then it’s alright to leave them outdoors. Otherwise, if you’re still using your air conditioner, set your thermostat no higher than 68 degrees F. You can also keep the pumpkin in the fridge if you have room but don’t let them freeze.
3. Refrain from carving the pumpkins until as close to Halloween as you can manage.
4. Spray the pumpkin with a bleach and water solution; you can also use lemon juice. These applications help prevent mold or decay.
5. Scoop out the pumpkin insides thoroughly. Scrape the sides.
6. Once you’ve carved the pumpkins, you can help prevent them from dehydrating by applying petroleum jelly or vegetable oil.
7. Another way to preserve Jack O’Lanterns is to soak them in a tub of water during the day, and then take them out at night.
Additional tip: Cut the bottoms of the pumpkins rather than the tops so you can easily set the pumpkin on top of the lit candles.
For more suggestions on using your HVAC system for Jack O’Lantern preservation, contact Powers Heating and Air of Peachtree City.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Peachtree City, Georgia and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 770-487-2040.