The Pumpkin Smash and Other Stuff to Do with Your Pumpkins

Photo credit: Audubon

With Halloween behind us, it is time to get on to the next piece of decor (Costco went to Christmas about two months ago) and therefore those lovely pumpkins on your front walkway, multiplying by the thousands in front of a house on Highland (you know who you are) and in front of the AIC are on the chopping block.

In the case of the Owl, that is quite literally what happened to one medium-sized pumpkin as an Owlet wished to try our his Ninja skills, chucked the pumpkin in the air and sliced it up with his new machete. Then tossed it in the woods for the wildlife. So there’s an option–Ninja is available for hire.

So let’s get on to some other options, but first some filler about everyone’s favorite squash. The worst thing you can do to a pumpkin is throw it in the trash can. They HATE that. And, according to Mothers Out Front, every year in the U.S. an estimated 1.3 billion pounds of pumpkins are added to landfills or garbage incinerators where they produce greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change.  Also it is very rude to pumpkins to say “hey, thanks for coming, jump in the trash can.”

So what to do with those pumpkins? here’s some options:

  1. Carry them to your own woods. You live in Weston. Almost 80% of you have major woods around your home that actually belong to you (don’t be chucking those pumpkins in conservation woods–this is not allowed and there are cranky WFTA rangers everywhere). The wildlife love it. The ninja’d pumpkin has already been gnawed by lots of little beasties. The remaining 20% of you have no woods and I am sorry for you. Look at another option.
  2. Compost. If you don’t have a food composter, why not? I imagine the transfer station is taking pumpkins as food waste but didn’t ask. You can ask.
  3. Bird feeder. I so love the Audubon for believing I have the skills here but I love this idea. There’s a video here on how to do it. Please take your own video of you building it. I would not suggest trying it with your massive sized ones.
  4. Update 11:03 am: I was reminded by a reader that you can drop your pumpkins off at Land’s Sake (90 Wellesley Street) to be composted. Large bins are located to the left of the parking lot until November 6.
  5. The Pumpkin Smash at Codman Farms. This is fantastic and now two Weston organizations are co-sponsors. On Sunday November 6 from 11 am to 3 pm, bring your jack o’lanterns and pumpkins over to Codman Community Farms and chuck them to the pigs (never ever AT the pigs). Please remove all the candles and if you painted your pumpkins, please don’t bring them at all. Get ready for uncomfortable kid questions about what happens to the pigs when they get all chonky from eating all the pumpkins.

If you are Brazilian or married to a Brazilian, you cannot get through pumpkin season without making one of my favorite recipes which involves pumpkins: camarão na moranga or shrimp in a pumpkin. You can find an Americanized version here — the Brazilian version involves a product called requeijão or “re-cheese” which does not exist here. You’ll have to live with cream cheese unless you know of the top secret Brazil market in Waltham. Fine, it’s called Cowboy.

And last and not least, how about baking up some pumpkin seeds? Pumpkin pie? Live large, Weston. Pumpkin season is but once a year here in the US. Just don’t chuck them in the trash.

See you next week with the holiday lights already. Time change, you know.


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