How to Preserve a Pumpkin After Carving?

A carved pumpkin is symbolic as per Halloween tradition but the main challenge is that it becomes susceptible to issues like moisture loss, mold, and rot. No matter what, a carved pumpkin will somehow deteriorate.

However, the good news is that you can preserve your carved pumpkins without using any chemicals and toxins. Wondering about how to preserve a pumpkin after carving? Then you are on the right track. Just keep on reading this post and you will realize that the process is pretty simple.

How Do You Preserve a Carved Pumpkin?

Preserving a carved pumpkin is a simple process that requires you to make a do it yourself (DIY) natural preserving wash solution. Alternatively, you can also choose the method of DIY spray which only requires a few ingredients.

The moment you carve your pumpkin, oxidation takes place as soon as the air enters its interior. Mold, fungi, and bacteria grow from inside when the skin of the pumpkin has been broken. The other issue is that carved pumpkins will dehydrate over time. Therefore, the following solutions can significantly help you to preserve your pumpkins naturally. 

Using Natural Carved Pumpkin Preserving Wash

The natural pumpkin preserving wash is a natural solution that mainly involves two ingredients namely: borax and peppermint essential oil. These two ingredients are wonderful in that they are natural and safe for the environment and your whole family. These ingredients also help to prevent rot and mold. Peppermint essential oil also leaves a good fragrance on your pumpkin. 


To prepare your natural pumpkin preserving wash, you should have the following ingredients

  • 2 cups borax 
  • 40 drops peppermint essential oil 
  • 4 gallons of water
  • A large 5-gallon bucket


Using a large 5-gallon bucket, you should combine two cups of borax with four gallons of regular tap water and mix well. The following step is to stir in 40 drops of peppermint essential oil into the contents that you have mixed in the bucket.

After carving your pumpkin, make sure that you thoroughly clean the interior and place it in the borax solution. If you have sensitive skin, then you can use gloves. 

How to preserve a pumpkin after carving?

You should allow the pumpkin to soak in the solution for about three to four hours but leaving it in the preserving wash overnight is the best. When you have soaked the carved pumpkin, you must take it out and dry it with a towel and it will be ready for use. You should also throw away the leftover wash and make sure that you keep the pumpkin out of reach of children. If you wish you can repeat the process in a few days. 

Natural Carved Pumpkin Preserving Spray

You need the following ingredients to make the natural spray for preserving carved pumpkin. 


  • 2 tablespoons borax
  • 8 ounces of water
  • 40 drops peppermint essential oil
  • 8-ounce spray bottle


Using an 8-ounce spray bottle, you should combine water and borax. Replace the bottle cap and shake well to mix the contents. You then add 40 drops of peppermint essential oil to the contents in the spray bottle. You should spray the carved pumpkin each evening, both inside and out. This process is very simple and effortless. 

As a thumb rule, you should know that carved pumpkins would not last longer than the uncarved ones but you can preserve them using these two methods. If you carefully follow the steps above, you can keep your carved pumpkin for the entire Halloween period.  You should constantly monitor your carved pumpkin to avoid the development of molds.

Other Tips and Tricks to Preserve Your Carved Pumpkin

  • First and foremost, before carving your pumpkin, you must make sure that you get the right one. Avoid pumpkins with broken handles or any weak spots.
  • Before carving the pumpkin, you must wash it lightly outside to remove soil and any dirt. 
  • You should also use a towel to dry the pumpkin to remove moisture from the surface before carving the pumpkin. 
  • You can also apply Vaseline or vegetable oil on the carved edges of the pumpkin to prevent it from drying quickly. The oil will keep the pumpkin moisturized while preventing bacteria and molds. 
  • Carved pumpkins also quickly run out of moisture so you can spray them daily with water that contains drops of bleach to moisturize them while keeping mold and bacteria at bay.
  • You should also store the carved pumpkin in a fridge when you are not displaying your Jack-o’-Lantern. You should first put it in plastic to prevent excessive moisture. 
  • The other important aspect is that you should avoid using a candle inside the carved pumpkin. Instead, you can use flickering flameless candles
  • When you notice that your carved pumpkin is beginning to show signs of wilting, you can give it an ice bath overnight to rehydrate it. Do not forget to dry it afterward.
  • You should also avoid leaving your carved pumpkins outside in freezing temperatures. Store them in an area with an average temperature of about 50s to lower 60s Fahrenheit otherwise keep them inside.
  • Alternatively, you can leave your pumpkin untouched and use other options like painting it. You do not experience any hassles with regard to preserving your pumpkin if you choose this method.

How to preserve a pumpkin after carving?


Halloween is a special holiday and many people celebrate it using carved pumpkins. While this is a tradition, you are likely to encounter challenges related to preserving carved pumpkins since they are susceptible to issues like rot and molds. Once the pumpkin is cut, it is exposed to bacteria and fungi which subsequently lead to the development of molds and rot.  

However, you can successfully preserve your pumpkin by using any of the above methods. I hope you have enjoyed reading this step by step tutorial about how you can preserve a carved pumpkin. If you have any comments or questions, feel free to post it below.