Halloween Crafts for Honolulu Families: How to Keep a Carved Pumpkin Fresh

5 ways to slow down pumpkin decay before Halloween.
10 21 Hn Picks Gettyimages 155446216 Pumpkin

Photo: Getty Images


When you live in a warm place like Hawai‘i, carved pumpkins decay faster.  The trick is to seal in moisture and keep them cool when possible. Try one of these techniques to slow down the decaying process and keep your carved pumpkins as fresh as they can be.


Our 5 Tips


  1. Store your carved pumpkin in the coolest possible place. If you have a shady area on your lānai, choose that over a spot where there is direct sunlight. Better yet, if you have pumpkins that are small enough, store them in the refrigerator when they are not “in use.”
  2. Cover the carved pumpkin with plastic wrap in between each use. This will keep it from drying out.
  3. Revive a shriveling or decaying pumpkin by placing it in a bucket of cold water. Keep it in there for at least a couple of hours before draining. Tip: Because a wet pumpkin can attract mold, try adding a couple tablespoons of disinfectant to the water before submerging the pumpkin. It should kill off any mold-causing bacteria.
  4. Smear petroleum jelly such as Vaseline or Aquaphor on all exposed areas of the pumpkin to seal in moisture. Vegetable oil also works.
  5. Poke a hole in the top of the pumpkin to allow heat from candles and electric lights to escape.


Remember, pumpkins rot faster in warm weather, so play the odds and try to delay your carving until at least a day or two before Halloween.



Want more craft and treat ideas? See our Halloween Corner for those and our full roundup of spooky events on O‘ahu.