"Why is this thing not rotting?!"

Michelle Heart, Townsquare Media
Michelle Heart, Townsquare Media

When it comes to carving pumpkins, I have 0 artistic ability. In fact, I never carved one myself until I was 19 and that was a hot mess. I do have decent painting skills though, so I tried my hand at painting characters on pumpkins instead. My experiments with a Finding Nemo and Minions pumpkin were adorable, so I was bummed when Nemo started to rot and I had to throw him away.  The Minion on the other hand? That thing stay fresh clear into January...so now I'm trying to remember exactly what the pumpkin looked like when I picked it out of the bin at Albertsons.  Apparently, it must've been the perfect pumpkin specimen!

If you're heading to the pumpkin patch to pick out your family's pumpkins and want them to stay fresh not just until Halloween night, but clear into Thanksgiving season, here's what you should look for according to Martha Stewart.

1) Pumpkin's Coloring

This is a bigger deal if you actually plan to carve your pumpkin into a spooky jack-o-lantern.  If you plan on carving it right away, look for one that's a deep orange in color.  If you're going to wait a little while to pull out the knives and scoops, you're safe with a green one that's got patches of orange starting to show through.  Stay away from pale yellow ones.  They're likely to rot first!

2) Holes, Wounds or Scabs on the Pumpkin

That pumpkin might look great at first glance, but really feel around it.  If you find any soft spots, leave it at the pumpkin patch as that's a sign that's it's already started to break down inside. Holes aren't good either! Scabs might actually be scrapes from the pumpkin being moved around, but scab free pumpkins generally hold up better!

3) Choose the Green Stem

This is what I THINK my pumpkin's stem must have looked like before I went all Picasso on it.  The greener the stem, the healthier/fresher the pumpkin is. Make sure there's no mold on the stem.  That's another sign that the pumpkin has already started to break down!

LITE-FM's 5 Favorite Pumpkin Patches

The Farmstead | 2500 South Eagle Rd, Kuna

Recognized at Best Pumpkin Patch in Idaho by Tripping.com, The Farmstead has over 40 varieties of pumpkins, gourds and Indian corn to spruce up your home this autumn! You can pick your own right out off the vine or grab one of the pre-picked Aladdin, Jack-O-Little, Kakao, Sugar Pie, Cinderella , Lumina, Baby Bear or Fairy Tale pumpkins!

The Berry Ranch | 7998 Highway 20-26, Nampa

Famous for letting families pick their own berries like raspberries, thornless black berries and strawberries, this farm also boasts a huge pick your own pumpkin patch! They also run a fall hayride in conjunction with pumpkin picking season.

Linder Farms | 7165 Linder Rd, Meridian

Most famously known as the official corn maze of the Boise State Broncos, Linder Farms is also a even for pumpkin lovers.

Jeremy's Pumpkins | 415 S Star Rd, Star

It may be small, but Jeremy's Pumpkins has been bringing joy to children for over 30 years! With an impressive 4.9/5 rating on Facebook, their fans say that they have the best selection and best prices on pumpkins in the area.

Kovick Kountry Farm | Ada Rd, New Plymouth

Just a bit off the beaten path from Boise, Kovick Kountry Farm give you a chance not to just harvest pumpkins, but family memories as well! In addition to their pumpkin patch, you'll also find a kids zip-line, selfie booth, corn box, mater train ride, petting zoo, campfires and hayrides!

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