How Do You Keep Your Jack-O-Lantern From Getting Nasty?
It seems that every year I let my son Deacon talk me into making a Jack-O-Lantern at the very beginning of October. It's easy to get caught up in your 9-year old's holiday spirit! His excitement is contagious to say the least, and it inevitably erodes my common sense that tells me a carved pumpkin will a few days, tops, before it looks like that guys face that melts in Indiana Jones when they open the Ark of the Covenant.
So, usually I end up carving 2-3 pumpkins per Halloween season when 1 should suffice. After doing a little research, I've found that science has provided a low-cost and extremely easy answer when it comes to extending the life of your little smiling, pumpkin-headed friend.
2 easy steps will help your jack-o-lantern last quite a bit longer.
First - After you carve your pumpkin with a face or a Halloween scene, you'll need to clean it thoroughly. The best way to do this is with a bleach and water solution. You can either spray it on or dip it into a sink full of your cleaner. Use 1 tablespoon of bleach for each gallon of water to properly dilute it, and make sure you have an adult around. If you don't want to use bleach, MSN suggests you can use a mixture of tea tree oil and grapefruit seed extract.
Second - The next step is to seal your creation up with Vasoline, vegetable oil, even WD-40 or cooking spray will work wonders on keeping bacteria out and keeping your jack-o-lantern fresh and orange.
Follow these steps and your Jack-O-Lantern should look great for the better part of 2 weeks instead of 2-3 days.
Caution: Don't do any of this if you plan on eating any part of your pumpkin, as it would make it quite unhealthy for you.