Adding Finishing Jack-o-Lantern Touches

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 10,342
    Champion pumpkin carver Tom Nardone demonstrates adding finishing Jack-o-Lantern Touches.

    Tom Nardone: Hi! This is Tom from extremepumpkins.

    com. We've put a lot of effort into our basic Jack-o-lantern here and now we are going to try make it last as long as possible. Well, one time I decided to think, I don't do it often. But I decided to think what would make a pumpkin last as long as possible. So I tried fourteen different things on a bunch of pumpkins, and what did work was bathroom cleaner with bleach in it, seem to keep the mold, bugs, and squirrels away from the pumpkin the longest. Fact, they made your pumpkin last about twice as long.

    How do you do it? Get yourself a spray bottle and spray all the areas, anything you cut, anything you scraped inside and out. Also try to get as many seeds out of there as possible because squirrels like those seeds, so spray it down and you are done.

    This will last long in your porch, in cool weather it'll last about a week. If you live in a really hot climate there is not much I can do for you, but in cool October weather usually this will last about a week or about twice as long as an untreated pumpkin.

    So I put some tea light candles inside the pumpkin, see. Make sure their wicks were standing out there, they are a little easier to light that way, and then I am not going to light them in this way because that makes the flame go up on my hands. So little safety tip is, light them from the mouth.

    A long match is a necessity here, you don't want have to explain to your friends that you burned yourself on a tea candle, it's embarrassing. Anyway it's Halloween; you might have two problems with candles in your pumpkin. It might be this, one, a windy Halloween night might blow out your candle, what do you do? Take an empty tuna can and put your tea candle inside there, that should keep the wind off of it better than nothing.

    The other thing is, your candle flame might be really small like disappointingly small, if that happens it needs more air, cut a couple of vent holes at the top rear of your pumpkin and a couple of vent holes at the bottom rear of your pumpkin, that will let fresh air into your candle and they will burn a little brighter.

    One other thing you might want to do is, you might want to turn these little things into real irises. So in order to do that we use a couple of different pumpkin carving tools. You can use this little guy to scrape off the skin, like so, or to do this other eye. I am going use my little dremel tool. So it sounds a little like a dentist drill which freaks people out enough to make me happy. Got my safety glasses on.

    Well, that worked well, didn't it? I think it turns a pumpkin into some sort of vapor that ends up in my lungs or something, either way it's fast and I like it, here we go!

    So you've made this great Jack-o-lantern and all the kids loved it for trick-or-treating. Now it's a few days later and you've got it to the side at what point do you throw it away? Couple of days after Halloween? You might start to form couple of rot spots, getting a little gross, better act now. Because if you wait a few days, it will get even softer and softer, and pretty soon gets to a point where when you try to lift it up only half of it comes up, then you are in trouble.

    So, while it's still somewhat firm stick it in a trash bag. Please put it out of the curb. You'll thank yourself later when you don't have to leave a mushy-cushy pumpkin Anyway I am Tom Nardone from extremepumpkins.

    com, thanks for watching, and if you happened to be in a bookstore, and you see one of these fantastic, bestselling pumpkin carving books, I hope you will buy one.

    Thanks!