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What colors do pumpkins come in?

What colors do pumpkins come in?

Pumpkins come in a wide variety of colors beyond just the traditional orange. While orange pumpkins are the most common, there are many other pumpkin varieties that can add interesting colors to fall displays. Knowing what colors pumpkins come in can help when selecting pumpkins for decorating or carving.

Common Pumpkin Colors

Here are some of the most common pumpkin colors:


Orange is by far the most common and recognizable pumpkin color. Orange pumpkins are the classic jack-o-lantern pumpkin. They have a rich, deep orange color on the outside and a stringy orange flesh on the inside. Orange pumpkins include varieties like Jack Be Little, Baby Boo, and Connecticut Field.


White pumpkins provide a clean, neutral color. The outside of white pumpkins is a creamy off-white or pale yellow. The flesh inside is a pale yellow rather than the traditional orange. Popular white pumpkin varieties include Baby Boo White, Ghost Rider, and Lumina.


Yellow pumpkins add a sunshine tone to displays. They have an exterior ranging from pale yellow to deep gold. The flesh is orange or yellow. Some common yellow pumpkin varieties are Jarradale, La Estrella, and Gold Rush.


Green is an unexpected pumpkin color that adds a natural element. Green pumpkins have an exterior that ranges from a sage green to a deep forest green. The flesh inside is still orange. Some green pumpkin types are Australian Green, Green Ghost, and Green Witch.


Red pumpkins provide a bold, dramatic splash of color. They have a deep scarlet red outer skin and orange or sometimes red-tinged inner flesh. Popular red pumpkin varieties include Cinderella, Radiant, and Rouge Vif D’Etampes.


Blue is one of the most striking pumpkin colors. Blue pumpkins have a blue-gray exterior and regular orange flesh inside. Blue pumpkin varieties include Blue Doll and Australian Blue. They are still relatively rare finds.


Some pumpkin varieties are multicolored, displaying a blend of hues. Examples are Jack Be Little pumpkins, which are orange with cream and green splotches.

Less Common Pumpkin Colors

Beyond the main pumpkin colors, there are some special exotic pumpkin colors that are less frequently seen. These include:


Pink pumpkins are most commonly a pale pink, but deeper pinkish-orange shades can occur. Some pink pumpkin varieties are Porcelain Doll and Pink Duck.


Tan pumpkins are not a common find but provide an understated elegance. They have a beige skin and orange flesh. An example is the Marina di Chioggia variety.


Gray is one of the most unusual pumpkin colors. Gray pumpkins have a distinctive blue-gray skin. The variety Goosebumps is a commonly seen gray type.


Solid black pumpkins are exceedingly rare, but some varieties like the Casper pumpkin are a very dark green that appears almost black.

What Influences Pumpkin Color

A few different factors contribute to a pumpkin’s exterior and interior color:


Genetics play a key role in determining pumpkin color. Pumpkin varieties are bred to produce set characteristics like skin and flesh color. For example, blue pumpkins get their unique color from recessive genes.

Environmental Conditions

Soil quality, sunlight exposure, moisture levels, and other growing conditions can impact how richly a pumpkin develops its genetic color potential. Under less ideal conditions, the color may fade or mute.


An immature green pumpkin ripening in the patch will change color as it reaches full maturity. The green chlorophyll breaks down as other pigments form, revealing the variety’s true colors.

Skin Type

Smooth, uniform pumpkin skin allows the full color to show through clearly. Warts, bumps, and ridges scatter light diffusely, muting and obscuring the underlying color.

What the Color Means

Besides visual appeal, does a pumpkin’s color tell you anything substantial about it? Here are a few meaningful things pumpkin color can signify:


Orange pumpkins have a richer, sweeter flavor than pale yellow or white varieties. Blue pumpkins also boast excellent taste.


Deep orange pumpkins tend to be denser and meatier. White pumpkins have firmer flesh and less stringy strands.


Miniature pumpkin varieties are commonly orange, yellow, or white. Full-size pumpkins over 15 pounds normally develop a deeper orange color.

Shelf life

Pale yellow and white pumpkins often store longer than orange varieties. Blue and green pumpkins tend to have shorter shelf lives.


Orange pumpkins are common. More unusual colors like blue or pink may indicate a special, sought-after variety.

Complementary Color Combinations

Grouping pumpkins of different colors together can create attractive displays. Here are some complementary pumpkin color combinations:

Orange & White Classic fall palette
Orange & Green Warm and cool contrast
White & Green Crisp and natural
Orange, Yellow, & White Happy sunshine tones
Green & Gray Earthy and organic
Orange & Blue Vibrant visual interest

Fun Facts About Pumpkin Colors

Beyond the common orange pumpkin, the diverse world of pumpkin colors has some surprising facts:

– White pumpkins originated as a mutation from an heirloom French pumpkin variety called Rouge Vif D’Etampes sometime in the 1800s.

– Blue pumpkins get their coloring from the same antioxidant, anthocyanin, found in blueberries and concord grapes.

– The green skin of immature pumpkins is from chlorophyll, the same pigment that gives leaves and grass their green color.

– Most brown pumpkins are orange varieties that suffered frost damage or sun scald during growing.

– The world record for the heaviest pumpkin, set in 2021, was a classic deep orange. It weighed over 2,700 pounds!

Growing Multicolored Pumpkins

You can grow a rainbow of pumpkin colors in your own garden. Here are some tips:

– Select pumpkin seed varieties that naturally produce different colors.

– Provide ideal growing conditions to help pumpkins fully develop their ripe colors.

– Stagger planting times so pumpkins reach peak maturity at different times.

– Hand pollinate flowers using pollen from a different color pumpkin variety to create interesting cross-hybrids.

– Extend the season by growing early ripening varieties like Jack Be Little alongside full-season types.

Decorating with Multicolored Pumpkins

Decorating with a mix of pumpkin colors creates excitement for autumn. Consider these tips when using multiple pumpkin colors:

– Combine 2-3 colors in a coordinated palette for visual interest.

– Allow one color to take center stage and use other colors in supporting roles.

– Use white pumpkins as neutrals to provide balance alongside bold colors.

– Incorporate pumpkins of different sizes and textures along with colors.

– Display pumpkins en masse for high impact or use sparingly as accents.

– Leave some pumpkins whole while carving, painting, or decorating others.

Carving Multicolored Pumpkins

Carving painted pumpkins expands options for Halloween fun. Consider the following when carving multicolored pumpkins:

– Carve white pumpkins and use LED lights or candles inside for dramatic glowing effects.

– Select pumpkin varieties with thicker walls that will carve well, like Jarrahdales.

– Enhance the natural skin color with paints and materials like glitter for custom creations.

– Layer patterns and cut-outs on painted pumpkins for artistic designs.

– Paint the interior flesh different colors before carving for colorful reveals when lit.

– Coordinate paint colors with themed carving patterns like zombies, unicorns, or spiders.

Painting Techniques

Painting pumpkins offers endless creative possibilities. Here are some recommended techniques:

Sponge Painting

Dab on paint with a sponge or rag for smooth coverage and blended edges between colors.


Use a brush to paint fine details like letters, stems, or facial features.


Cut stencils from cardstock and use a sponge or brush to apply paint through the cut-out patterns.


Create texture and depth by dotting paint on with a stipple brush.

Color Washing

Dilute acrylic paints with water and apply a thin color wash over the surface.


Add sparkling accents by brushing on tacky glue and applying glitter.


Use spray paints for smooth, blended color gradients.

Picking the Perfect Pumpkins

With so many colors to choose from, selecting the ideal pumpkins for your display starts with planning:

– Decide on your overall color scheme and variety types that will work well together.

– Figure out how many pumpkins you need of each color and size.

– Find a trusted nursery or farm that grows a diverse range of pumpkin colors.

– Inspect each pumpkin for intact stems, smooth skin, consistent coloring, and signs of rot.

– For painting, choose pumpkins that are blemish-free with a hard rind and flat base to sit on.

– Pick an assortment of shapes and sizes for interest. Round, tall, flat, ridged, and warty pumpkins all mix nicely.

– Ensure pumpkins are fully ripe and ready for display based on their maturity and stage of color development.

Storing Multicolored Pumpkins

Extend the life of your prized multicolored pumpkin display with proper storage:

– Keep pumpkins in a cool, dry, well-ventilated area out of direct sun.

– Wash off dirt but do not wash before storing, as excess moisture promotes rot.

– Use cardboard, straw, or soft cloth to separate stacked pumpkins and prevent bruising.

– Avoid storing pumpkins near apples or other ripening fruit, which release ethylene gas.

– For large quantities, consider a temperature controlled shed, basement, or commercial cooler.

– Check pumpkins frequently for soft spots and signs of mold or decay. Remove any compromised pumpkins.

– Consider coating pumpkins with a non-toxic vegetable oil to boost preservation.


Pumpkins come in a vibrant array of colors that can be mixed creatively for seasonal decor. Beyond basic orange, pumpkin displays can incorporate white, green, yellow, pink, red, blue, and even black varieties. Each color has its own unique appeal and decorating possibilities. With protective harvesting and storage measures, these special multicolored pumpkins can be enjoyed for months during the fall and holiday season for an eye-catching palette that celebrates the spirit of autumn.