Love The Animals? Then, Stop Bleaching Your Pumpkins, New Jersey!
Can't say I've ever done it, but apparently there are plenty of people that have heard of the old bleaching of the pumpkin trick in an effort to get it to last ten times longer.
We are in that season, after all. Pretty soon, families all across the Garden State will be headed to the pumpkin patch to pick their yearly harvest. Then, they'll take them home to be carved. Apparently, when you use a little bit of bleach as your carving out your jack-o-lantern, it actually preserves the pumpkin for much longer.
Some people say you can even preserve it through Thanksgiving.
If you're that family that puts your jack-o-lanterns on display on your front porch, wildlife experts are asking that you refrain from bleaching your pumpkins this year. It's understandable that you want to do what you can to preserve them for as long as possible. Still, if it's going to wind up killing wildlife, is it really worth it?
Don't forget, little critters like squirrels and mice can't distinguish which foods might be laced with poisonous substances. The bottlecap on top of the bleach is so much as just unscrewed and we can smell it from more than a few feet away. That's not the case with these little guys.
They see that pumpkin as one thing: food. It's food for them to consume. Bleach isn't going to deter them from picking at it. All it does is prevent the pumpkin from turning too soon.
If you're still interested in preserving your pumpkin, the experts say that you can use 1 part vinegar with 10 parts water. According to them, it works just as well as bleach and won't hurt the animals once they're ready to start chowing down.