What do Jack-O-Lanterns, Halloween, the Fall season and pies all have in common with each other? Did you guess pumpkins because if so, you're right!
You'll discover lots about this topic here on this pumpkin facts for kids page which has 10 fun, interesting and educational pieces of trivia and info to read and learn about. Children (and adults too) can discover lots of things about this rather unique fruit that we tend to eat like a vegetable.
Read below to learn and discover much more which can be used for school, home schooling and education, homework and just because you want to know more pumpkin fun facts.
Note: This post may contain affiliate links for which I can be compensated.
Lots of Fun Pumpkin Facts for Kids to Discover for the Fall Season
Many people do not realize that the pumpkin is a fruit because it sure doesn't look or eat like one! However it gets classified as a fruit because it contains seeds.
It's easy to get mixed up with the fact it is a fruit, just the same as with thinking a tomato is a vegetable when, again, it's also really a fruit.
The word pumpkin comes from the Greek word pepon. Pepon is a word that means large melon. So, you could say that this fruit is actually the largest melon in the whole wide world.
1) Where do Pumpkins Grow?
Pumpkins can grow on 6 of the 7 continents (large area of land) in the world.
This shows how good they are at coping with different conditions and climates. The only place that they won't actually grow naturally is in Antarctica and that is because it is far too cold.
The pumpkin capital of the world is in the United States, in a place called Morton Illinois. Illinois, Pennsylvania, Ohio and California are the states that grow the most of this type of squash.
2) Is Pumpkin a Fruit or a Vegetable?
The pumpkin is actually a fruit because it has seeds in it as well as other reasons. People mostly treat it like a vegetable in terms of cooking because it is used in a lot of savory recipes but also in some sweet recipes too.
How do you like to eat yours, sweet or savory? Pumpkin Pie (shown here on this image below) is a real Fall favorite recipe and enjoyed particularly over the Thanksgiving season.
Pumpkin Pie: a Delicious Treat for Fall and Thanksgiving
It is a member of the Curcurbita (part of the gourd) family, which also includes edible foods such as squash, cucumbers, gourds and other melons. Which of these items do you like to eat or perhaps you don't like any?
3) Can You Eat All of a Pumpkin: Is The Whole Thing Edible?
Almost everything about the pumpkin can be eaten, even the skin is edible although that can be quite tough. The most popular way to eat this is in pie form.
There are about 500 seeds in every single one, so don't try to count them all. Once the seeds have been scraped out of this fruit, then cleaned and baked, they can make a really great snack. You can even eat the big, yellow flower that grows on the vine too!
Pumpkins have plenty of Vitamin A which helps our bodies to fight nasty infections and illnesses and helps us to see better in the dark. They are also a good source of potassium, a mineral that often occurs in foods that are good for us.
Being low in fat they are a very healthy choice for us to eat but perhaps not if you have the pie version too often though.
4) About Pumpkin Carving
Image Credit: photo belongs to the author.
It was actually the Irish peoples who brought this tradition over to America. The tradition of carving these large fruits for Halloween didn't start in the United States as some people might think.
When the Irish people moved over to the United States they found that pumpkins were easy to find and much easier to carve than turnips.
There are plenty of books with carving ideas and there are also some stencils that you can buy too. There are also some safer no-carve ways of decorating pumpkins which are better for kids to make use of.
Having a good carving kit is half the battle to creating a really cool, carved pumpkin. The other half is imagination which you can fuel by getting ideas online.
5) How did Colonists Eat Them?
Back in history, the early colonists of America used to slice off the tops of these and remove the seeds from them. Then they would add milk, spices and honey inside the seedless skin.
They baked the pumpkin whole over hot ashes to create the first ever type of pumpkin pie, just one without any crust to it.
6) What is the Heaviest Pumpkin Ever?
The heaviest one to be put officially on record, was grown in 2010. It weighed 1,810.5 pounds. This amazing whopper could be used to make about 900 pies for Fall and Thanksgiving. That would feed an awful lot of people.
7) What Were the Native Americans Uses for Pumpkin?
Pumpkins are made up of around 90% water. Native Americans would dry out strips of the fruit and then weave these strips together to make mats that they could sit on. Native Americans also used this fruit for food to eat and also medicine.
8) How do You Grow Your Own?
There are Many Different Pumpkin Varieties and Colors including Green
The pumpkin seeds are planted in the spring. It can take about a week for the seeds to sprout or emerge, and the first leaves to appear. In as little as three weeks, yellow flowers may begin to show.
These flower blossoms only live for half of a day. That doesn't give the bees very much time to pollinate the flowers. Pollinate means that the bees help the flowers to create seeds that grow into fruits.
The bright yellow and large pumpkin flowers before they grow into the fruit that we eat.
Image Credit: photo belongs to the author.
Once they are pollinated, the pumpkin flower starts to grow into a small fruit. It takes about 90 to 120 days for a pumpkin to actually grow from this. These are picked in October when they have turned bright orange.
Try planting your own to see if they will grow on the continent where you live. As long as you don't live in the icy, cold Antarctica, you should be OK! Plant the seeds in spring and then have plenty for all your Halloween and Thanksgiving celebrations, use them for food and for decoration too.
9) What was the Largest Pumpkin Pie ever Baked?
The largest pumpkin pie ever made, was over 5 feet across (about as big as a short sized adult) and weighed more than 350 pounds. Chefs had to use 80 pounds of this fruit for the award winning pie. That's a whole lot of pumpkins!
10) You can Eat the Canned Variety all Year Long!
While 80% of the supply is only available as fresh in the Fall or autumn, you can still find them in a processed form on your grocery store shelves. You and your family can enjoy flavorful and healthy pumpkins all year long from a can.
For Adults who Love Cooking I Recommend:
Pumpkin, a Super Food for All 12 Months of the Year by DeeDee Stovel
|No :||Pumpkin Fact|
|1||The pumpkin is a fruit not a vegetable|
|2||Pumpkins grow on 6 of the 7 continents|
|3||The only place they don't grow is Antartica|
|4||Pumpkin comes from the Greek, Pepon, meaning melon|
|5||Morton Illinois is the pumpkin capital of the world|
|6||It can be used in sweet and savory recipes|
|7||You can eat almost all of this fruit|
|8||The skin is edible although it is very tough|
|9||Pumpkins contain hundreds of seeds|
|10||You can plant seeds or bake and eat them|
|11||Some people even eat the flower before it forms a fruit|
|12||Pumpkins are packed with vitamin A|
|13||They are low in fat and a healthy food choice|
|14||Irish brought pumpkin carving to America|
|15||Early colonists would bake inside the pumpkins|
|16||Pumpkins are made from about 90% of water|
|17||Native Americans wove mats from strips of this fruit|
|18||Pumpkins grow from pretty, bright yellow flowers|
|19||Plant seeds in spring for Halloween pumpkins|
|20||Eat these all year long with the canned variety|
Books with Pumpkin Information for Kids and Stories for Children
Seasonal Books that Kids Can Enjoy
Pumpkins by Jacqueline Farmer: Kids age 5-8 can learn a lot more about this topic with this book.
Seed, Sprout, Pumpkin, Pie by Jill Esbaum. Educational picture book with large photos that children from 4-8 can enjoy.
The Pumpkin Book by Gail Gibbons. Children's book which explains the planting, cultivating and harvesting of pumpkins using easy to read text and illustrations.
Too Many Pumpkins by Linda White: What does Rebecca do when she has too many of these? This is a charming children's book with lavish illustrations that children and adults can enjoy together. A warm storyline ideal to capture the mood of harvest time, Halloween and the Fall season. Brightly colored and cute country scenes filled with home baking delights and a charming story.
Big Pumpkin by Erica Silverman. A witch grows the biggest pumpkin ever. Here's a great Halloween story, particularly aimed at preschool kids, about a witch who grows the biggest one ever but it is actually too big to take it and make a pie with it. What does she do and will she get her pie in the end?
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Articles are accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.