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How To Choose The Right Pumpkin For Your Jack O’lantern [VIDEO]

Jack O' lantern
Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images
Picking the right pumpkin for your Jack O’lantern is the key to success.  Steve Reiners, professor of horticulture and pumpkin expert at Cornell University offers some tips on choosing the perfect pumpkin.  Read more to find out why now is the time to buy your pumpkin.
Professor Reiners says despite our wet weather and early frost, New York has a bumper crop of pumpkins this year.  And now is the time to get one.
Make sure you get your pumpkin soon as the crop is a little early this year and growers will have a huge selection to choose from.
He offers these tips if your pumpkin will evolve into a jack o’lantern and needs to last for more than a couple of weeks.
  • buy one in early October when selection is at it’s best
  • a little green on it is okay because it will slowly ripen off the vine and should be totally orange by Halloween
  • look for a pumpkin with a sturdy or hard stem, if the handle is soft, it may indicate a diseased pumpkin.
  • choose a pumpkin with no soft spots or bruises
  • choose a pumpkin that’s shape flows with your planned carving

Watch the video to get more tips from Professor Reiners.

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