Apples, strawberries, pumpkins…
you can’t get fresher than fruit you pick yourself
Cannamore Orchard grows a variety of pumpkins and gourds of all shapes and sizes for your family enjoyment. Cherish that valuable time spent with your children in searching for the “perfect” Halloween pumpkin! Don’t forget to select another one for your baking needs or simply visit our orchard store to discover delicious pumpkin pies already made! We also offer a selection of coloured corn for your autumn or Thanksgiving decorating needs. Coloured corn adds to your Halloween decorating too!
Pre-picked pumpkins are located at the front outside the orchard store in the pumpkin house and in the wagons. Pumpkins range in size from the smaller pie pumpkins to the larger carving pumpkins. Also found here are gourds (many colours, sizes, and shapes) as well as coloured corn and corn stalks
If you wish, you can go into the “pick your own pumpkin field” and pick your own pumpkins beginning mid-September. There are carts and wagon available to bring back what you find. Pick-your-own pumpkins are priced the same as the pre-picked pumpkins. Bring your own large bag or box. Pick your own pumpkins are usually available everyday all through September and in October till Thanksgiving. After Thanksgiving, because of the Spooky Wagon Ride, they are only available on weekdays.
- Use a pumpkin carving knife. They are inexpensive and safe and they do an excellent job cutting curves and tight corners. Much easier and safer than a large kitchen knife.
- Clean the outside of the pumpkin with plain water and a sponge. Allow to dry.
- You need to cut the top of the pumpkin around the stalk in order to get at the inside and to make your pumpkin lid. Cut the lid out on an angle facing in or toward the stem of the pumpkin. This will allow a tight fit on top even if the lid shrinks a bit.
- If you are going to use a candle inside your pumpkin you should carve out a small hole in the bottom of the pumpkin to help hold the candle. Better would be to use a votive candle and holder or a battery powered light.
- Scoop out the pulp and seeds and scrape the inside of the pumpkin until it is clean and smooth.
- Tip: When cleaning the inside of your pumpkin scrape the inside wall to an inch thick. This will make carving a lot easier.
- Tip: Use an ice-cream scoop to clean out your pumpkin instead of bending your kitchen spoons.
- You may want to put the seeds aside for later cooking or saving for next year’s pumpkins.
- Since a pumpkin is a member of the winter squash family, it’ll last quite a while in storage. It’s only when it’s carved that it’ll begin to deteriorate rapidly.
Pumpkin Picking Tips
This is an excellent family event and one not to be rushed. Don’t forget to bring your camera etc.
- Pick your pattern before you pick your pumpkin.
- Find the colour of the pumpkin you want, (orange, brown, white) and try to get one that has a uniform colour over the whole pumpkin.
- Pumpkins come into two general shapes: the typical sphere like a basketball or the oblong oval like a watermelon. The oval ones are good for carving detailed faces. Depending on what you are going to carve, you might want a long pumpkin or a shorter stubby pumpkin.
- Warts and bumps on a pumpkin can be made to fit into the finished carving. Scarring is normal. A lot of people say it spurs creativity — you can use that scar for a mouth or whatever. If the pumpkin is going to have to sit up straight, make sure it does so. If it leans in one direction, the side facing the ground will be the back and the side facing up is the front.
- Make sure your pumpkin is sound and has no potential rot. Black or discoloured areas and soft or pliable spots are a good indication of developing rot. Make sure you check the bottom too.
- If you are going to pick your own pumpkin from a pumpkin patch:
- Make sure you have boots or outdoor shoes. Pumpkins grow on the ground and if it has rained recently, or there have been heavy dew mornings, the ground can be quite wet or muddy.
- Bring a sharp knife or pruner or get one from the pumpkin patch owners.
- Once you find the pumpkin you need to remove it from the vine. It is important to make a clean cut, leaving a good amount of the stalk (vine) on the pumpkin. NEVER pick up the pumpkin by this stalk. The pumpkin could break free from the stalk. Always lift the whole pumpkin.
- Once you have picked out your pumpkin don’t roll, throw, or drop it. A pumpkin that can roll around in the trunk of a car can easily get bruised and rot will soon start. Bring a box to put in your vehicle trunk and put the pumpkin into the box.
- After you get home with the pumpkin it will need to be stored if you’re not going to carve it right away. Keep your pumpkin in a dry cool place. Do not store it on concrete. If you must put the pumpkin on a concrete floor, put a layer of cardboard under it.
- Draw a pumpkin face design on paper first. Even the youngest child can draw a design on paper. Next transfer your design onto the pumpkin with a felt pen.
- For younger children, keep the design simple. The fewer curves, angles, and cuts, the better the result.
- Slowly begin to cut out the pattern. Slow is very important as a mistake in carving can alter or ruin the outcome.
- You can accent features on your pumpkin design by using a black marker.
- Use a pumpkin carving knife. They are designed for carving pumpkins, and are less likely than a large kitchen knife, to cause injury.
- Keep your finished pumpkin on a metal pie or cookie pan, especially if indoors. This keeps any dripping wax that might get through the pumpkin off the furniture and when the pumpkin begins to go bad, prevents messy spills and stains.
- Do not leave a pumpkin unattended with a lit candle inside.
- When using knives, even a pumpkin carving knife:
- do not let very young children use them
- always point knives away from you
- keep your free hand away from the direction of the knife
- use a slicing motions, like cutting a sandwich, and never force the knife.
- For a unique jack-o-lantern, add a little glow paint, or fake blood.
- Insert a bowl into a carved pumpkin and add dry ice and warm water to create an extra spooky, smoke filled jack-o’-lantern.
- Apply a light coating of petroleum jelly on all cuts to seal the wounds and make the pumpkin last longer.
- If you need to keep a carved pumpkin for a few days, keep it in a cool, dark place to slow spoilage and lessen fruit flies.
- You can usually revive shrunken pumpkins by soaking them in a bucket of water.