Every fall we ask ourselves, why are pumpkins all anyone can ever talk about this time of year? Don’t get us wrong, we enjoy our fair share of pumpkin spice lattes and pumpkin patch family photos, but what make this vegetable such a cultural icon? Will future civilizations look back and think we worshiped a gourd three months out of the year?
In Abilene, squash grows quite easily, and the pumpkin is a relative of the squash. Disability Resources, Inc. has a beautiful pumpkin patch every year, and The Pumpkin Man will deliver pumpkins right to your neighborhood. Our homes are no less affected by this annual craze than any other community. After some lab testing (i.e. several pumpkin spice lattes and a trip to the pumpkin patch), we have hypothesized a few theories.
Theory #1 – Pumpkins, when mixed with fall weather, have an addictive quality.
Why not? Those of us who love pumpkin, LOVE PUMPKIN, but most of us only obsess during certain times of the year. We hypothesize that it must be the combination of pumpkin flavor and decreasing temperature that releases some science-y endorphins that raise people’s levels of happiness and keep them coming back for more. Obviously, since we’ve been on the subject of pumpkins you need these recipes now. You know, for your pumpkin fix.
Theory #2 – Pumpkins are the best vegetable ever.
Seriously, what other vegetable flavor can you put in desserts and coffee? Okay, we admit you can have a sweet potato pie. But at best it’s an unwanted sibling trying to imitate pumpkin pie with near identical use of spices and flavors. Also, pumpkins are super healthy. Check it! They fight cancer. What could be better than that?
Theory #3 – Pumpkins are the perfect outlet for fall creativity.
Easy to get your hands on and easy to carve, pumpkins are Sculpture 101 for the average Joe. They are a fun and forgiving medium, and they come in such a beautiful collection of colors. They are great for beginners, but even the professionals can have fun with them. A few Abilene artists showed their creative skills on pumpkins this year. If you want to up your carving game here’s a little tutorial on appropriate use of Pumpkin carving tools. And a fun list of pumpkin science experiments for little mind and bodies. They are creative and smart!
Here at Scene we may not be actual social scientists, but we sure have fun speculating about why pumpkins are the most popular vegetable. What’s your theory about why pumpkins are so popular? We’d love to hear it! Comment below.