The pumpkin, that lovely gourd, is the icon of Halloween. You can't decorate your house properly without it. It's lovely carved and lit at night and bright and cheery in the daytime. This brings me to my one and only rule for decorating the exterior of your house for Halloween:
Decorations should look as good in the daylight
as they do at night!
No excuses. There is nothing more depressing than driving by a house and seeing a puddle of deflated black cat and hanging lightbulbs. Really, that's all you've got? You can still use those things, but consider hiding the puddle of plastic during the day with a stack of pumpkins at the very least. Think about designing two different scenes that work together- one for day and one for night viewing.
That's why I say pumpkins are our savior. They do double duty. So, to get you in the mood for a week of outside decoration I have some images of pumpkin displays that would be over-achieving to be sure, but possibly will inspire you. You know you buy more pumpkins than you can carve anyway.
|Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens|
|Ralph Upton's Gourd Mosiac|
|Pumpkin Tree from 200Acres Great Pumpkin Patch|
|200 Acres Great Pumpkin Patch|
|(source: The Martha Blog)|
|Don't know the original source but find more here|