CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- It’s that time of year when carved jack-o-lanterns that illuminated home porches all October are now starting to look rotten and deflated.

Instead of simply tossing old pumpkins in the trash, the City of Charleston’s Office of Sustainability is encouraging residents to dispose of them in an environmentally friendly way.

You can tell if a pumpkin is ready to be composed if it has lost its orange color or has become soft and mushy.

Remember to remove any paint, glue, glitter, candle wax or other decorations from pumpkins as those items are not compostable.

Here are three free composting options being offered by the City of Charleston:

Drop-off pumpkin at Bees Ferry Compost Facility

From Nov. 1 until Nov. 30, a special clean pumpkin collection bin will be available near the food scrap carts at the Bees Ferry Compost Facility, located at 1344 Bees Ferry Road.

The facility is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m.

Attend the Pumpkin Smash event

The city will hold its first Pumpkin Smash event at the West Ashley Farmers Market on Nov. 19 from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Ackerman Park.

People can smash their used pumpkins before they are collected for composting. The event is open to all ages but adult supervision is required for children under 18.

Safety glasses, which are recommended for all participates and required for children, will be available.

Join the Charleston Composts program

Charleston Composts is a free program that offers members year-round composting at one of more than a dozen food scrap drop-off sites throughout the region.

The program is sponsored by the City of Charleston, The City of Folly Beach, the City of Isle of Palms, the Town of Mount Pleasant, the Town of Sullivan’s Island, and Charleston County.

For more information and to sign up to participate, click here.