Decorative pumpkins

Autumn is here! A festive fall display isn’t complete without some gorgeous pumpkins.

Decorative pumpkins are ornamental Cucurbita cultivars used for fall decor. While some are carved, others are displayed whole – often on the front porch, mantle, or dining table. Some popular decorative pumpkin varieties include Cinderella, Jarrahdale, and French Fairytale pumpkins. jewelry

Read on to learn all about the best varieties of decorative pumpkins!

Decorative pumpkins on the front porch

1. Cinderella pumpkin (Rouge Vif d’Etampes)

Cinderella pumpkin (Rouge Vif d’Etampes) is a large, red-orange heirloom pumpkin variety from France. These pumpkins weigh about 20-30 pounds and are known for their brightly colored rind and classic flattened heirloom pumpkin shape. While this variety is known for its good looks, it also makes a wonderful cooking pumpkin and is perfect in fall soups or stews (or roasted whole for a stunning dinner party display).

2. Jarrahdale Heirloom pumpkins

Jarrahdale pumpkin is a medium-large, grey-blue heirloom pumpkin variety from Australia. These are the classic “blue” heirloom pumpkins, with a slate-blue rind and deep, blocky ribs down the sides. A Jarrahdale heirloom pumpkin will typically weigh in the range of 12-18 pounds when ripe. This variety is another type that can be used for decor or for cooking (or both!). Find more heirloom pumpkin varieties here.

Decorative pumpkins - making a fall display

3. French Fairytale pumpkin

Fairytale pumpkin (Musquée de Provence) is a medium-large, dusky-tan heirloom pumpkin variety from France. Pumpkins of this variety have deep, chunky ribs and a matte rind. Ripe pumpkins weigh 15-20 pounds. Like many other heirloom pumpkins, the Fairytale/Musquée de Provence makes a fantastic cooking pumpkin (along with being pretty to look at).

4. Big Max pumpkin

Big Max pumpkin is a giant decorative pumpkin with a beautiful bright orange-red rind. These easy-to-grow pumpkins easily grow to 50 pounds but can grow over 100 pounds in good conditions. Unlike more popular giants like Atlantic Giant Pumpkin, the Big Max pumpkin keeps a rounded shape when ripe (not the blob-like shape of some giants). Big Max pumpkins are not only ornamental but can also be used in more ways to make delicious pumpkin puree or roasted pumpkin for an autumn dish. You can shop these pumpkins at specialty plant nurseries or try growing your own!

5. Long Island Cheese pumpkin

Long Island Cheese pumpkin is a medium-sized, tan heirloom pumpkin cultivar from Long Island (NY, USA). These plants have a pale pastel creamy-yellow rind, like a big wheel of cheese. Each pumpkin weighs in the range of 6-10 pounds. This variety is popular for pies and is also a great long-term storage pumpkin.

Triamble decorative pumpkin

6. Triamble pumpkin

Triamble pumpkin is a medium-sized blue-green heirloom pumpkin cultivar from Australia. Fruits have a unique three-lobe shape, and are nicknamed “Shamrock Pumpkins”. These heirloom pumpkins weigh about 8 pounds when ripe, and make just as good cooking pumpkins as they do ornamentals.

7. Blue Doll pumpkin

Blue Doll pumpkin is a medium-large, blue-grey modern hybrid pumpkin variety bred to have the appearance and flavor of an old-fashioned heirloom pumpkin. Fruits are deeply ribbed and reach 15-20 pounds per fruit. The flesh is bright orange, and well-suited for pies, soups, or canning.

8. Porcelain Doll pumpkin

Porcelain Doll pumpkin is another medium-large modern hybrid pumpkin bred to have the appearance of an old-fashioned heirloom, but with a pale pink-colored rind. Individual pumpkins weigh 18-22 pounds and are deeply ribbed. A portion of proceeds from Porcelain Doll Pumpkins and seeds goes to support Breast Cancer research.

Knucklehead decor pumpkins

9. Knucklehead pumpkin

Knucklehead pumpkin is a hybrid decorative pumpkin variety covered in green and orange warts. They make wonderful scary Jack-O-Lanterns and can be carved in other ornamental designs. Most are about 12″ tall and 10″ wide. Knucklehead Pumpkins are easy to grow and are another ornamental variety that also makes a good culinary pumpkin.

10. Kabocha Japanese heirloom pumpkin

Kabocha pumpkin is a small, dark green heirloom pumpkin variety from Japan. These pumpkins have a rough outer rind and a bright orange interior. The sweet, fine-textured flesh is perfect for making curries, pumpkin bread, and other delicious fall recipes.

Each pumpkin ranges in size from about 3-5 pounds. Plants are very productive, producing fruit from mid-summer into autumn. Coupled with some art supplies, they also make beautiful table centerpieces and other indoor decors.

11. Seminole heirloom pumpkin

Seminole pumpkin is a small tan heirloom pumpkin from the Everglades (Florida, USA). These pumpkins vary in shape, from little round 2-pound pumpkins to 8-pound butternut-shaped fruits.

Originally cultivated by the Seminole people, these pumpkins grow well hanging from trellises, fences, or even trees. Seminole pumpkins are well known for both their resistance to heat and humidity, making them perfect thanksgiving party supplies, and for their delicious, smooth taste when cooked.

Decorative pumpkins up the stairs

12. Sugar Pie pumpkin

Sugar Pie pumpkin is a small orange heirloom cultivar of pumpkin from New England (USA). Sugar pie pumpkins weigh 2-3 pounds each, and are fantastic for decor or for making pumpkin puree for savory dishes. The fruits are quite round and can also be roasted whole or used to create a serving dish. Sugar Pie Pumpkins remain some of the most popular heirloom pumpkins to this day. Find more small pumpkins here.

13. Marina Di Chioggia pumpkin

Marina Di Chioggia pumpkin is a medium-sized, dark green heirloom pumpkin from the town of Chiogga, Italy (just south of Venice). These Italian heirlooms weigh about 10-12 pounds each and are known for their warty, wrinkly, almost bubbly rind. Marina Di Chioggia is an excellent cooking pumpkin, with wedges often served roasted with a bit of olive oil and salt.

Winter luxury pumpkin

14. Winter Luxury pumpkin

Winter Luxury pumpkin is a medium-sized, tan heirloom pumpkin cultivar that’s both ornamental and a gourmet culinary variety. These pumpkins grow to reach 6-8 pounds when ripe and are known for both their pale, rough rind and incredibly sweet, smooth flesh. Winter Luxury remains a sought-after pie pumpkin for bakers. Shop the seeds from specialty nurseries and online stores.

Peanut pumpkin close up

15. Galeux d’Eysines pumpkin (Peanut pumpkin)

Galeux d’Eysines pumpkin (Peanut pumpkin) is a medium-sized, tan heirloom pumpkin from France. These pumpkins are known for their peach-colored skin that’s covered in bumpy “warts”! Inside, the flesh is very flavorful, smooth, and sweet. Galeux d’Eysines Pumpkins are well-known as delicious soup-making pumpkins.

16. Blue Moon pumpkin

Blue Moon pumpkin is a medium-sized hybrid pumpkin with a blue-grey rind and wide, blocky ribs. The rind is smooth and the stem is a dark green color. They can be displayed or carved to create unique Jack-O-Lanterns. Ripe Blue Moon Pumpkins weigh about 10 pounds each and can also be used for cooking.

Decorative pumpkins for autumn

17. Connecticut Field pumpkin

Connecticut Field pumpkin is a large orange heirloom pumpkin variety from the New England area (USA). Individual pumpkins weigh about 20 pounds and are slightly taller than they are wide. This centuries-old variety makes beautiful Jack O’Lanterns and can also be used for pies. The Connecticut Field Pumpkin is THE classic American all-around pumpkin variety.

Black futsu pumpkin from the garden

18. Futsu Black pumpkin

Futsu Black pumpkin is a small-sized, green-black heirloom pumpkin from Japan. These unique pumpkins are round and very dark green as they start to mature, developing deep ribs and a wrinkly rind. Ripe Black Futsu Pumpkins turn a dusky brown color and weigh about 3 pounds. This variety is known for its long-keeping storage characteristics and the sweet, nutty flavor of its flesh.

19. Jaune Gros De Paris pumpkin (Yellow of Paris pumpkin)

Jaune Gros De Paris pumpkin (Yellow Of Paris) is a large, yellow heirloom pumpkin variety from France. These big yellow pumpkins typically weigh 40-50 pounds but can grow to reach over 100 pounds in good conditions. While this heirloom is beautiful, it is known mainly for its tender, sweet cooked flesh. Use this pumpkin variety in pies, soups, or baked goods like pumpkin bread.

20. Queensland Blue pumpkin

Queensland Blue pumpkin is a large, blue-grey heirloom pumpkin cultivar from Australia. The gorgeous grey-blue pumpkins have deep ribs and a flattened, almost cylindrical frame. These pumpkins store for many months due to their thick rind. Queensland Blue Pumpkins are sought after for decor, but also make a very sweet golden-colored pumpkin puree.

21. Flat White Boer pumpkin

Flat White Boer pumpkin is a large, creamy-white heirloom pumpkin variety historically cultivated in South Africa. These pale pumpkins grow to 25-30 pounds when ripe. This variety is great both for decorating and for use in cooked pumpkin recipes.

Decorative pumpkins

22. Jack Be Little mini pumpkin

Jack Be Little pumpkins are adorable orange mini pumpkins. At 4″ wide and 2″ tall, each mini pumpkin weighs only 8 ounces. Jack-Be-Little pumpkins have an orange rind and a flattened shape with deep ribs down the sides.

The flesh inside is tasty, making these mini pumpkins perfect for single-serving autumn dishes such as roasted whole pumpkins. They can also be hollowed out and used as a tiny vase for fall flowers, or just decorated whole with paint. Jack Be Little pumpkins are also great storage pumpkins, lasting up to a year if cured fully first.

23. Howden pumpkin

Howden pumpkin is the standard large decorative pumpkin variety. This cultivar was bred by John Howden of Massachusetts in the 1970s and has been the classic big Jack-O-Lantern pumpkin ever since. Ripe Howden pumpkins typically weigh in the range of 18-26 pounds each. Many newer hybrids of Jack-O-Lantern are descended from this legendary decorative pumpkin.

24. Lumina pumpkin

Lumina pumpkins are medium-sized white pumpkins. These beauties weigh 10-12 pounds each and make fantastic Jack-O-Lanterns. These round pumpkins have slight ribs and smooth rinds. Lumina pumpkins take 3-4 months to grow on vining, open-pollinated plants.

25. Casper pumpkin

Casper pumpkins are medium-sized rounded white pumpkins with a bright orange interior. Each pumpkin weighs 10-12 pounds. The flesh is great for baking and making pumpkin puree. They also make fantastic decor and carve pumpkins (and really do resemble a friendly ghost!).

26. Midnight pumpkin

Midnight pumpkins are nearly-black mini pumpkins. Mature fruits generally weigh 1-1.5 pounds each. These little beauties have a round shape and wide ribs. The exterior of these sweet, edible pumpkins is almost black, sometimes with slight orange markings. Midnight pumpkins pair well with other miniatures Orangita and Casperita, for a tri-color display of mini pumpkins. Check out some more types of black pumpkins to decorate with.

Warty pumpkin

27. Red Warty Thing pumpkin

Red Warty Thing pumpkin is an ornamental pumpkin with a red rind covered in bumpy warts. At 10-20 pounds per pumpkin, it makes a unique Jack-O-Lantern. Red Warty Thing can also be displayed whole to show off its warts! This cultivar is great for cooking as well as for decor.

Decorative pumpkins for autumn
Decorative pumpkins - stairs - display for autumn

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Mary Jane Duford
Mary Jane Duford

Mary Jane Duford is a quintessential Canadian gardener. An engineer by trade, she tends to an ever-expanding collection of plants. In her world, laughter blooms as freely as her flowers, and every plant is raised with a dash of Canadian grit.

Mary Jane is a certified Master Gardener and also holds a Permaculture Design Certificate. She's also a proud mom of three, teaching her little sprouts the crucial difference between a garden friend and foe.

When she's not playing in the dirt, Mary Jane revels in her love for Taylor Swift, Gilmore Girls, ice hockey, and the surprisingly soothing sounds of bluegrass covers of classic hip-hop songs. She invites you to join her garden party, a place where you can share in the joy of growing and where every day is a new opportunity to find the perfect spot for yet another plant.

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