The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Local News

November 1, 2013

Turn 'ghoulish gourds' into prime compost

Halloween is over and it’s time to put the decorations back in the attic or the garage for another year. The lights, the inflatable Frankenstein; the witch in the tree and the floating ghosts all go into hibernation.

Back inside, you longingly stare at the leftover candy in the bowl near the door.

“Should I or shouldn’t I?” Sure. Go ahead and indulge … wisely.

Meanwhile, out on the front stoop is the lonely jack o’ lantern. For the past few nights, it’s been a beacon, sharing the spotlight with the front yard display.

Now, it just sits there rotting away; its teeth curling in and the candle inside melted into a glob of wax.

So. What do you do with that once-great pumpkin?

Here’s the answer: Don’t toss it in the garbage can or the landfill. Compost it.

"Food waste deposited in landfills, including discarded Halloween pumpkins, produces methane which, if not managed properly, can contribute to greenhouse gases," said Anne Germain, director of waste and recycling technology for the Environmental Industry Associations.

"Composting a pumpkin using a few simple tricks can help produce treats for the environment."

In a news release, Germain offered these tips to composting the “ghoulish gourds.”

• Remove items that cannot compost, such as candles or foil, and the seeds, which may grow into unwanted new pumpkins.

• If you don't have a compost pile, find a shady spot in the garden for hollowed-out pumpkins.

• Smash pumpkins into smaller pieces. This increases their surface area and helps them turn to compost faster.

• Loosely cover the pumpkins with compostable materials such as leaves or wood chips. This helps break down the pumpkins into compost and protects them from garden pests.

In just a few weeks, the pumpkins will transform into nutrient-rich compost.

1
Text Only
Local News
Poll

Do you think Athens-Limestone County is better prepared than in April 2011 to provide shelter from a major tornado?

Yes
No
     View Results
Facebook
AP Video
U.S. Paratroopers in Poland, Amid Ukraine Crisis US Reviews Clemency for Certain Inmates Raw: Violence Erupts in Rio Near Olympic Venue Raw: Deadly Bombing in Egypt Raw: What's Inside a Commercial Jet Wheel Well Raw: Obama Arrives in Japan for State Visit Raw: Anti-Obama Activists Fight Manila Police Motels Near Disney Fighting Homeless Problem Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye' Obama to Oso: We'll Be Here As Long As It Takes Bon Jovi Helps Open Low-income Housing in Philly S.C. Man Apologizes for Naked Walk in Wal-Mart New Country Music Hall of Fame Inductees Named 'Piles' of Bodies in South Sudan Slaughter SCOTUS Hears Tv-over-Internet Case Chief Mate: Crew Told to Escape After Passengers
Twitter Updates
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Stocks
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Business Marquee