How to pick, prep, and decorate the perfect pumpkin
What to Bring to the Pumpkin Patch
Whether this is your first trip to a pumpkin patch or you’re looking to enhance the experience, it’s good to know the do’s and don’ts of traditional pumpkin picking.
The most important thing to bring to the patch is an enthusiastic audience—in other words, children! Children enjoy the custom and are, by nature, expert pumpkin pickers.
But, before you pack up the kids and set out to the farm, make sure you’re dressed in long sleeves and heavy pants. Pumpkins grow in coarse vines that can scratch unprotected skin. If you’re planning to take pictures, don’t forget your camera and keep clothing in warm autumnal colors for best results. Rosy cheeks, happy faces, and a fall palette equal great photo opportunities! The traditional wagon (some farms have wagons available) give the littlest pickers a place to sit during the hike and double as a great picture prop.
How to Pick the Perfect Pumpkin
It might seem that all you have to do is steer your child to the closest pumpkin and take it home, but there is more to pumpkin selection than the size of the pumpkin. Make sure to pick one that has a stem about two inches long. If the stem is shorter than two inches it might indicate that the pumpkin is beginning to decay. You should also review the pumpkin’s overall condition to ensure there are no visible bruises or cuts which could decrease the longevity of your orange friend. If you are going to use the pumpkin as a jack-o-lantern, remember you need only one good side and can ignore a less than perfect pumpkin. Lastly, don’t carry the pumpkin by its stem, which could break and leave you with a smashed pumpkin.
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