Pumpkins and Jack O' Lanterns Composting

In Calgary you can compost your Halloween pumpkins in your green cart.

How to compost pumpkins and jack-o'-lanterns

Put pumpkins and jack o' lanterns into your green cart for composting.

Special instructions

• Seeds, squash and pumpkin guts can also be composted.
• Remove any candles and other accessories before composting.
• Put painted pumpkins and pumpkins preserved with bleach or other chemicals in your black cart as garbage.

If you have your own compost bin then, yes, you can compost your entire pumpkin. All parts of the skin, meat, stem, guts, and even seeds are compostable. Do note however that your pumpkin seeds are quite hardy and may overwinter in your compost pile. If you put the seeds into your compost bin then you're likely to grow a few pumpkin plants. Not that it's a bad thing unless they come up in a bad spot. If you plan on regrowing pumpkins in the coming season, then this can actually be a benefit. However if that is the plan then best to just dry the seeds and store them as you would any other in a cool dark place in a container that isn't prone to drying up completely like a baggie or Tupperware container.

Remember that Pumpkin seeds are edible, and roasted seeds are a popular fall snack. You can also compost the seeds after boiling them if you want the nutritional benefits of the seeds without the volunteer sprouts.

Preparing your pumpkin for composting We've already noted removing any candle wax, glitter, or paint from your pumpkins. Pumpkins break down more quickly and easily in smaller pieces. You can break your pumpkin apart in any way you'd like. If you want to be sure every piece ends up in your compost, you can smash it while it's in a bag or already in your compost bin.