About 2 weeks ago, my youngest daughter and her boyfriend took a weekend trip to Lancaster, PA and brought me home a grocery bag half full with pumpkin stems for my future projects. I put the bag in my crafts room and got busy filling a couple orders and then working on items to add to my Etsy shoppe. This morning I saw the bag on the floor under the table and opened it to see what was in it. The memory isn't what it used to be. What greeted me upon opening the bag was a really bad smell and BLACK and WHITE lumps of something...... Apparently the pumpkin stems were wet when they were picked by daughter and boyfriend and left in a closed bag (by me) and they grew MOLD.
Do I pitch them? OH HECK NO!! Not real pumpkin stems!!!!
I got out an old toothbrush and started scrubbing them and rinsing under warm water. I did some googling to see the best way to dry them ( I planned on popping them in the oven on a cookie sheet but didn't know how long to keep them in there).
Someone said to spread them out on a cookie sheet and let them dry naturally for 8 weeks.
I'm not that patient, so I preheated my oven to 200 degrees and popped those babies in there for 30 minutes. They came out perfectly dried and ready to use.