12 Days of Halloween in Cincinnati: Day One — Pumpkin Preparation

Every day, CityBeat will feature spooky inspiration for how to get into the haunted holiday spirit.

click to enlarge Jack-O-Lanterns - Photo: Taylor Foss on Unsplash
Photo: Taylor Foss on Unsplash
Jack-O-Lanterns

It's Oct. 20, which means there are just 12 days until Halloween, and CityBeat is giving you some spooky inspiration for how to get into the haunted holiday spirit. Come back to citybeat.com each day for new Halloween tips.

Of course, we can’t forget one of the most important Halloween traditions: putting Jack-O-Lanterns on your front porch. 

If you're carving out some time this week or next, you'll want to make sure your pumpkin creations last until trick-or-treat night. The Farmers' Almanac has five tips to help keep your fiery orange friend fresher longer. 

  1. Spray your squash with a solution of one tablespoon bleach per quart of water. The Almanac says that once you've carved,  spray the inside and allow to dry to kill off any bacteria that may lead to rotting.
  2. For a more natural solution, mix up 1 tablespoon peppermint Castile soap in a quart of water. The Almanac says peppermint will slow the rotting time because it is a natural anti-fungal. 
  3. To prevent dehydration, lube it up by applying petroleum jelly or olive oil to any surfaces you have cut. 
  4. Treat your jack-o-lantern like it's going out for a night on the town by spraying any cut surfaces with hairspray, which, the Almanac says, may slow down the decaying process. 
  5. Make things easier on yourself and increase the longevity of your festive decor by cutting into your gourd from the bottom instead of at the stem. The Almanac says this will allow moister to escape rather than pool at the bottom, plus you can use the stem and a handle. 

And there’s no jack-o-lantern carving without getting your pumpkin first. While you can, of course, pick one up at the store, what’s the fun in that? Instead, check out our list of some of Cincinnati’s most prized pumpkin patches.


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