9 Fun Fall Gourd and Pumpkin Facts

9 Fun Fall Gourd and Pumpkin Facts : Find out which nation formerly accepted gourds as payment, which watermelon-based game is performed in Japan, and a wealth of other pumpkin-related information.


9 Fun Fall Gourd and Pumpkin Facts 

Here in the United States and Canada, pumpkins and Halloween go hand in hand. This fall, enjoy these interesting gourd pumpkin facts with a piece of pumpkin bread and set down your pumpkin carving knife!


1. Pumpkins Are Part of the Winter Squash Family

Winter squashes are typically identified as those with tough outer rinds that are harvested later in the season. Similar to zucchini, summer squash are harvested earlier and have more sensitive skins. Each is a member of the Cucurbita genus. Any kind of winter squash, including butternut and acorn squash, is referred to as a “pumpkin” in Australia and New Zealand. Like all other squash species, pumpkins are indigenous to North America, although they have gained popularity as a vegetable throughout much of the world.\



2. The World’s Largest Pumpkin Weighed 2,703 Pounds 

In Italy, Stefano Cutrupi set the record. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the enormous gourd weighed more than 17 adult males and was bigger than a Nissan automobile!



3. The Gourd Family is Plenty Large

You can choose from a wide variety of gourds if you want to cultivate them in your garden. There are over 975 species in the plant family “Cucurbitaceae,” popularly known as the gourd family. In addition to pumpkins, the category also includes melons, squashes, and cucumbers. Common characteristics include susceptibility to temperatures close to freezing and rapid growth on vines.



4. There’s a Unique Japanese Game Involving Gourds

In the Japanese custom known as suikawari, participants attempt to split a watermelon that is resting on a covering on the ground by using a wooden stick, or bokken, while wearing blindfolds. After a set amount of time, players must finish the challenge, and everyone gets to enjoy the watermelon. Although there are “official rules” for the game, groups are usually allowed to play anyway they choose.



5. Not Every Pumpkin is Good for Pie

There are many different kinds of pumpkins that nature has given us, and we have further nurtured and hybridized them as humans. Typically, bigger varieties of pumpkins like “Connecticut Field” and “Howden” are chosen for carving. The smaller types, referred to as “sugar pumpkins,” are used in baking and cookery; examples are “Baby Pam” and “New England Pie Pumpkin.”

Additionally, white pumpkins like “Baby Boo” and “Caspar” are becoming more and more popular. These pumpkins make unique carvings since they are white on the outside but have vibrant orange meat within.



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6. Gourds Were Once Used as Money

During the early 1800s, gourds served as the temporary official money of Haiti. The gourde, Haiti’s official coin, is a reminder of their past.



7. Jack-o-lanterns Weren’t Originally Made From Pumpkins

Carving fall vegetables is a long-standing tradition. Many believe the Irish, who typically carved turnips or beets, are responsible for the first Halloween-style carvings. Upon arriving in America, individuals from these nations discovered that pumpkins were even more effective and began utilizing them as well.



8. Pumpkin is a Very Versatile Food

You’re losing out if the only way you’ve ever eaten pumpkin is as pie! You can roast, bake, pickle, and stew pumpkin. For a tasty treat, roast and season pumpkin seeds. You may also give your backyard birds unsalted, unseasoned seeds. And for a delicious Southwestern treat, fried your pumpkin blossoms if you can get them early in the season.



9. One Gourd Makes for a Particularly Healthy Snack

Since cucumbers are over 95% water, they are minimal in calories, saturated fat, and salt. Cucumber slices provide roughly 16 calories per cup.

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