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Tips on how to use leftover pumpkins as Grantham-based Woodland Trust issues warning about dumping them in woods

Now that the spookiest time of the year is over, people may not know what to do with their leftover Halloween pumpkins.

The Woodland Trust, based in Grantham, has issued advice to people about what they can do with their pumpkins, instead of dumping them in the woods.

This advice has been issued because pumpkins can pose a danger to wildlife.

Pumpkins can be reused for other purposes.
Pumpkins can be reused for other purposes.

On its social media, a spokesperson for the Woodland Trust said: “Thousands of tons of pumpkins get thrown away in the UK after Halloween each year.

“Sadly, some of those pumpkins get dumped in our woods.

“Pumpkins can make wildlife such as hedgehogs ill if they eat them.

“Removing dumped, rotting pumpkin waste costs us time and money which we could instead be spending on vital conservation work.”

Here are some tips as to what to do with your leftover pumpkin.

Turn a pumpkin into a bird feeder

A pumpkin could be turned into a bird feeder.

To do this, take off the lid of a pumpkin, or if there is a fresh pumpkin, cut off the top and take out the insides.

Push strong sticks through so they stick out to create perches for the birds.

Fill the pumpkin with bird seed and place it on a bird table, or tie strings to sticks and hang them from branches.

When the pumpkin then starts to rot, add it to a compost heap to avoid harming the birds.

Regrow pumpkins for next year

Another way to reuse your pumpkin is to save its seeds and plant them for next year.

The seeds simply need to be rinsed to remove any pulp, and once clean store them in a cool and dry spot for one week.

After this, place them in a fridge until April as they can be grown from as early as April or May.

Food for animals

Apart from being dangerous to hedgehogs, pumpkins can still benefit other creatures such as birds, squirrels, butterflies and more.

Pumpkins can provide food to wildlife after hibernation.

If people are not keen to attract small animals to their gardens, then they can donate their pumpkins to farms for the animals to eat.

Turn a pumpkin into a planter

Instead of using a plant pot, plants can also be put into pumpkins.

To do this, make sure the pumpkin is empty and then fill it with soil until it’s half full and put in any desired plant to grow.

Pumpkin dishes

For those who are a fan of the taste of pumpkins, they can be turned into many recipes.

Whether someone has a savoury or sweet tooth, pumpkins can be used to make soups, cakes and other seasonal treats.

Websites such as BBC Good Food offer a range of recipes to follow to cook up a pumpkin feast.

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