The thrill of Halloween is over and jack-o'-lanterns are starting to deflate... so what should you do with your rotting gourds? Hint: Don’t throw them away.
In a landfill, pumpkins and other organic materials are buried and rot without oxygen. Enter: Methane, a potent greenhouse gas. This is a driving factor of climate change, according to the UN Environment Programme.
Instead of trashing your seasonal porch decor, drop off old pumpkins at a composting site or compost at home.
Food scrap composting sites
Keep your gourds out of a landfill by dropping them off at one of the Triangle’s four food waste collection sites. Pro tip: Remove all accessories from your pumpkins before drop off (think: tea lights and decorative items like stickers).
- Convenience Center Site 4, 3600 Yates Mill Pond Rd., Raleigh
- Convenience Center Site 7, 9024 Deponie Dr., Raleigh
- Convenience Center Site 2, 6120 Old Smithfield Rd., Apex
- Convenience Center Site 8, 2001 Durham Rd., Wake Forest
At these sites, food waste is collected and turned into compost.
Compost from home
You can also compost pumpkins at home to ensure they decompose properly. Plus, it will leave you with rich soil for spring gardening.
Pro tip: Chop up your gourds and remove remaining seeds to help speed up the break-down process. You can also purchase mulch and compost from the City of Raleigh’s Yard Waste Center at 900 N. New Hope Rd. to help fuel your compost journey.
Don’t know how to compost at home? We’ve got you covered.