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A Green Lantern

October 20, 2010

If you’re like me, you haven’t yet carved any pumpkins for Halloween this year. But, maybe you still plan to. I am debating between carving a traditional jack-o-lantern, triangle eyes and all, and trying out one of the multitudes of free templates online. I know my family would enjoy some brightly lit cartoon characters, but then again, they’re tiny and easy to please.

Now, there isn’t much about pumpkin carving that is sustainable, but it is tradition and, more importantly, fun for all. I have some ideas of how I’m going to “green” up my pumpkin carving experience and I thought I’d pass them along.

1)   Print a free template from an online source at home. It allows me to use my recycled copy paper, it’s free, and there is no packaging or extras that I don’t need.

2)   Select the perfect pumpkin. I’m lucky enough to have access to pumpkins grown by my dad, but for everyone else, select a pumpkin from a locally grown source like a place near my hometown:

3)   Save the seeds for roasting. Just rinse off the pumpkin goo, lay them out on an oiled baking sheet, salt and/or season, stir, and roast for 25 minutes in a 325-degree oven. Presto, change-o, you have a salty delicious treat!

4)   Compost the remaining pulp. (Although I love to cook, this is not where I shine.)

5)   Preserve the carving. I plan to spray the whole thing down with hairspray to help it last another week or two. I’ll be using the Aveda product I currently own that has a net-zero climate impact; hopefully you’ll also be using an eco-friendly hairspray.

6)   Light it up. I’ll just use either one of my soy or beeswax candles that I’ve picked up over the years from local shops and farmers markets.

7)   Ever after. Depending on how long the pumpkin holds up, I will probably turn it around to display the side with little to no carving through the rest of fall. After that, it will be added to my compost bin like any other food scrap.

Pumpkin harvest

These ideas and plans will make my pumpkin carving experience a much greener one than most. I’m itching to get started! Happy Halloween!

One Comment leave one →
  1. Crystal permalink
    October 20, 2010 1:22 PM

    You have inspired me to green up my pumpkin carving this year too! Thank you for the great idea!

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