Instead of throwing your used pumpkins in the bin here are 5 easy ways of recycling your pumpkins which also benefit the environment and the wildlife in your garden.
1. Turn your pumpkin into a bird feeder
This is a very easy and quick thing to do. Cut the pumpkin in half and make sure the inside is hollowed out. Cut holes in the pumpkin and insert twigs in to give the birds a place to perch.
You can tie rope around the pumpkin and hang it from a tree or place on a bird table. You can fill the pumpkin with wild bird food.
The National Wildlife Federation has recommended to use the pumpkin seeds as bird food. Collect the seeds from your pumpkin and let them dry. You can then either mix them in with the bird food or leave them individually on a flat surface for the birds to eat.
Pumpkins are very beneficial for soil. Composting pumpkins is a great way of recycling them.
Make sure you remove all ornaments from the pumpkin before composting it. The pumpkin seeds also need to be removed because if they aren’t they will germinate and start growing pumpkins in your compost pile. Then put the pumpkin into your compost bin or pile.
If you don’t have a compost bin or pile, you can simply dig a hole and put the pumpkin in it and cover it back up with soil and let it compost over the winter.
Cutting up and smashing the pumpkin into smaller pieces can accelerate composting. Smashing the pumpkins is fun and it’s a great way to get the kids involved.
3. Food for chickens
If you have chickens at home, use your left over pumpkin as feed for your chickens. The pumpkin is full of vitamins and minerals which your chickens will benefit from. Simply cut the pumpkin in half and leave it in the chicken’s pen. They will happily peck away at it.
4. Use your pumpkin as a flower pot
This is a fun way to reuse your pumpkin. If you have cut out your pumpkin you can line the inside of the pumpkin with newspaper so the soil doesn’t fall out.
5. Food for wild animals
Some wild animals love to eat pumpkins, especially squirrels. Cut up the pumpkin into small pieces and place it on a table or at a height away from hedgehogs. While squirrels and birds love pumpkin, they are not good for hedgehogs’ digestive systems.
Whatever you do, don’t throw your pumpkin in the bin – there are so many great ways to give it a better send off.
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