A Cornucopia of Pumpkins
Fall festivities are sure to include pumpkins, and with hoards of genetically engineered pumpkins and their fruit-family kin, gourds, popping up at farmers' markets across the country, there's lots to choose from. Here's a look at some of the wild and weird varieties.
A hideously disfiguring disease hasn't stricken these pumpkins – they've been genetically engineered to look that way. The warty pumpkins are called "Knuckle Heads" and are part of Siegers Seed Company's bumpy "Super Freak" series. Because of their large jack-o'-lantern shape, it takes at least 10 generations of cross-breeding to produce a pumpkin that's adequately covered in warts.
A Boo in the Pumpkin Patch
This "Casper" pumpkin has a smooth, ghastly white shell that's perfect for carving jack-o'-lanterns or painting on a spooky face.
"Cosmic Stars" are squash that have a flattened shape and scalloped edges. They get their name from their UFO flying saucer-like appearance.
Eerie Lumps & Bumps
Some of these "Goose Bumps" pumpkins' warts have grown in green – a perfectly creepy accent for Halloween.
"Koshare Yellow" gourds are small and broadly striped with dark green and gold bands. Their unique spoon-like shape is reminiscent of a goose.
This One Had Too Much Cider
Referred to as a novelty pumpkin, what makes this one unique are the red "veins" that crawl across its skin's white background. Giving the illusion that it's been stuffed chock-full has earned it the name of the "One Too Many" pumpkin.
A Warty Twist on an Old Tradition
With their freaky textures, warty pumpkins make goofy jack-o'-lantern faces goofier and scary carved faces scarier.
The yellow, green, orange and white star-shaped "Daisy" gourds have warts and a unique pattern resembling a flower at the end of their stems. Gourds are in the same family of fruit as the pumpkin.
Peanut-Patterned Pink Pumpkin
This pink pumpkin is named "Galeuse d' Eysines," which roughly translates to "embroidered with warts from Eysines," a city in the southwest of France. Covered in beige bumps that resemble peanuts, it also makes for a pretty frightening fall decoration.
Some varieties of the goose-like "Koshare Yellow" gourds have ribbed tips, fittingly called wings, sticking out around their bodies.