How to Prepare Harvested Pumpkin Seeds for Planting


The pumpkin, Cucurbita pepo, is a member of the same family as melons, cucumbers and squash. A flowering vine, the pumpkin is a warm-weather crop that is harvested in the fall. Once the pumpkin fruit is harvested, the pulp is used in any number of culinary dishes, while the seeds can be roasted and eaten or saved to be planted in the garden. Once you have harvested the pumpkin seeds it's easy to prepare them for planting.

Step 1

Place the seeds in a bowl of warm, soapy water. Rub off any pulp that may be clinging to them.

Step 2

Pour the seeds into a strainer and run cool, clean water over them until they are rinsed thoroughly.

Step 3

Place the seeds on a baking sheet lined with paper towels and allow them to dry for four weeks. Turn them over several times during the first three days.

Step 4

Place the seeds in an envelope and store in a cool, dry area until ready to be planted. The seeds can be saved for six years.

Things You'll Need

  • Bowl
  • Liquid dish detergent
  • Water
  • Strainer
  • Baking sheet
  • Paper towels
  • Envelope


  • Gardening Know How: Saving Pumpkin Seeds: How to Save Pumpkin Seeds for Planting
  • University of Alaska: Cooperative Extension: Pumpkin Seeds
  • Cornell University: Pumpkins

Who Can Help

  • North Carolina State University: Growing Pumpkins and Winter Squash
Keywords: prepare pumpkin seed for planting, collecting and saving pumpkin seeds for planting, how to clean pumpkin seeds

About this Author

Victoria Hunter, a former broadcaster and real estate agent, has provided audio and written services to both small businesses and large corporations, worldwide. Hunter is a freelance writer specializing in the real estate industry. She devotes her spare time to her other passions: gardening and cooking. Hunter holds a Bachelor of Arts in English/creative writing.