Nov 3, 2023 - News

3 alternatives in New Orleans to throwing away your pumpkins

Photo shows a man smashing a pumpkin with a baseball bat.

Compost NOW provides bats and hammers to smash pumpkins at its event Saturday. Photo: Courtesy of Compost NOW

Don't throw away your Halloween pumpkins. Instead, feed a goat or make the soil better.

Driving the news: Metro New Orleans has drop-off options for pumpkin composting.

  • The New Orleans Public Library also is hosting a pumpkin-smashing event on Saturday.

Pumpkin smashing: The library has partnered with Compost NOW to collect pumpkins from 11am to 1pm at the Rosa Keller branch.

  • Carved and uncarved pumpkins are accepted.
  • You can also use the provided baseball bats and hammers to smash the pumpkins.
  • The pumpkins and their guts will be taken to Schmelly's Dirt Farm for composting.
Photo shows a pile of pumpkins in the parking lot
The 2022 pile of pumpkins at Laughing Buddha was enormous. Photo: Carlie Kollath Wells/Axios

Feed an animal: Laughing Buddha Nursery in Metairie collects pumpkins to feed the animals at Local Cooling Farms, owner Kate Estrade tells Axios.

  • Unpainted pumpkins can be dropped off in the parking lot bins at Laughing Buddha through January.
  • Carved and uncarved pumpkins are accepted.
  • The pumpkins are fed primarily to the goats, which have babies in December, Estrade says. The pigs, chickens and cattle also eat the gourds.
  • If you are on the North Shore, you can drop off pumpkins at the farm in Bogalusa.

Backyard compost: You can compost them in your yard if you have space.

  • Remove the candles, wax and any decorations. Scoop out the seeds if you don't want baby pumpkins to grow.
  • Smash the pumpkin or cut it into pieces. Put the pieces on the dirt and then cover them with leaves.

Go deeper:

Photo shows pumpkins on a porch
Carved and uncarved pumpkins can be composted. Photo: Carlie Kollath Wells/Axios
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