Working for the Weekend: Recycling Pumpkins for Wildlife

Halloween is approaching, so there’s a good chance you have a pumpkin or two around your house. They make great

Halloween is approaching, so there’s a good chance you have a pumpkin or two around your house. They make great decorations, but once the carving and trick-or-treating is over, don’t just toss them in the trash. There are lots of great ways to use pumpkins in and around the yard in the weeks ahead.

  •  If you have a garden, set aside a handful of seeds to plant in the spring. Rinse and dry the seeds in a cool dry place for several weeks and then store until next year. (Click here for more details.)
  • In warmer climates, offer pumpkin flesh and pulp in your butterfly garden. Simply cut into small pieces and place in a shallow dish for fruit-loving butterflies like Red-Spotted Purples to enjoy. In areas where butterflies are already gone for the winter, you can offer the pumpkin pieces for other wildlife like deer and rabbits.
How do you share leftover pumpkins with wildlife in your backyard? Share your ideas in the comments below!

Jill Staake
Jill lives in Tampa, Florida, and writes about gardening, butterflies, outdoor projects and birding. When she's not gardening, you'll find her reading, traveling and happily digging her toes into the sand on the beach.