People with plans for fall decorating or carving the perfect Jack ‘O Lantern are getting some good news from Cornell University: the 2019 season has some of the best quality pumpkins and unique gourds in recent years.

Getty Images

Professor of horticulture, Steven Reiners says the warmer, dryer summer produced about an average yield but the quality of the pumpkins and variety of gourds are about the best he’s ever seen.

Reiners, who is also a New York State vegetable industry expert, says there are many more odd and unique gourd varieties being grown this year.  Some farms have been trying out as many as 50 different varieties.

Reiners advises when picking your pumpkin, look for a sturdy, hard stem and no soft spots on the fruit.  A little green is fine and may actually be better since the gourds will continue to ripen while sitting out.

He says New York grows more jack-o-lantern type pumpkins than any other state.

Reiners say a carved pumpkin will only last about seven days but pumpkins and gourds purchased today could last through Halloween or even Thanksgiving if uncut.