Why Do We Carve Pumpkins at Halloween?
Their origin comes from an Irish myth about Stingy Jack, who tricked the Devil for his own monetary gain. When Jack died, God didn’t allow him into heaven, and the Devil didn’t let him into hell, so Jack was sentenced to roam the earth for eternity.
In Ireland, people started to carve demonic faces out of turnips to frighten away Jack’s wandering soul. When Irish immigrants moved to the U.S., they began carving jack-o’-lanterns from pumpkins, as these were native to the region.
Well here we have 10 fast facts about pumpkins to prepare you for Halloween, enjoy!
1. The original Greek name for the pumpkin was pepon, which meant large melon. This was changed by the Puritans.
2. The pumpkin is a member of the cucurbit family, which are gourds, such as cucumbers and squashes.
3. They come in many shapes, sizes, and colors.
4. As it has seeds, the pumpkins are classed as fruit.
5. Pumpkin seeds are traditionally planted in greenhouses in April. When they begin to grow for May, they are moved outside. When the colors begin to change from green to orange, they can be harvested.
6. There are many types of pumpkin, the most common being: the Cinderella, the One Too Many, the Fairytale, the Jarrahdale, and the Jack-be-Little.
7. The heaviest pumpkin on record was in October of 2012 – it weighed 2009 pounds!
8. Turnips and swedes were originally carved at Halloween – not pumpkins. However, they have become a stable fixture of the Halloween holiday.
9. In America, pumpkin pie is a traditional Thanksgiving dish, but it can be used in many more recipes, such as lasagna, pasta, and soups.
10. In America, a carved Halloween pumpkin is known as a ‘Jack-o-Lantern’ and is used as a decoration. Many families join in the carving process.
Pumpkins are the most famous Halloween time vegetable. I’m sure now after reading these facts that you’ll appreciate them more than ever.