CAMPBELL RIVER, B.C. – There are much more environmentally friendly options to get rid of your pumpkins post Halloween, instead of tossing them into the trash can.

According to the Comox Valley Regional District, pumpkins that end up in the landfill do not break down the way they would in a compost pile.

The pumpkins decompose without oxygen, producing leachate and methane gas which is harmful to the environment. These smashed pumpkins will become compost instead of waste.

The CVRD reminds residents that they can be part of the solution and keep their pumpkin out of the landfill by using one of the following options.

Residents of Courtenay, Comox and Cumberland

Place your pumpkin on the curb within your yard waste or kitchen scraps container.

Pumpkins will be collected during regular yard waste and/or organics scheduled pick-up days during the week of Nov. 5 to 9.

Pumpkin smashing event

Attend the 12th annual Pumpkin Smash event at Strathcona Gardens Recreation Complex in Campbell River.

This is a free, fun-filled family event which keeps thousands of kilograms of pumpkin out of our landfills.

These smashed pumpkins will become compost instead of harmful waste.

Participants are reminded to remove all objects such as wax, candles and tea lights from their pumpkins prior to smashing. Please note that Pumpkins with spray paint will not be accepted for disposal.

The pumpkin smashing event happens Saturday, Nov. 3 and Sunday, Nov. 4 from 11:00 a.m. to 3 p.m. both days at the  Strathcona Gardens recreation complex, 225 S. Dogwood, Campbell River.

This event is in partnership with the Campbell River Fire Department.

Donations to the BC Professional Fire Fighter’s Burn Fund are accepted.

Other ways to dispose of Halloween pumpkins

There are some other ways that you can help keep your pumpkins out of the trash.

Chop them up into thumb-sized pieces and put the pieces into a backyard composter.

Or put pieces of pumpkin in a vermicomposting bin (a kitchen-based worm bin) that will yield nutrient-rich compost which can be used to grow next year’s pumpkins.

For more information on composting and other solid waste programs, click here.