Pumpkin Patches Won't Pitch Products

By: Matt Holmes Email
By: Matt Holmes Email

Sunday October 28, 2007

The life of a pumpkin is brief.

You start out in a patch with all your brothers and sisters and if you're lucky, you'll be carted off and carved up; all to be forgotten by the time Thanksgiving rolls around.

But what about those pumpkins that don't leave the farm before Halloween? How do they fulfill their pumpkin destiny?

"They can be used for cooking still," says Cynthia Chiles, whose family owns Carter Mountain Orchard. "We'll still sell a few after Halloween, but we'll try to get people to take them off our hands by maybe putting them on sale or having some sort of fun contest with them."

We're only a few days away from Halloween and at Carter Mountain Orchard, there are still hundreds of pumpkins waiting to be picked.

Chiles says these last two weeks of October are the orchard's busiest of the year, a matter complicated by the rains last week.

"Our business was a little bit slower for those days," Chiles says, "but all farmers needed the rain. Our apples benefited, our pumpkins, even though some of them are already cut, still benefited. They cleaned off the dust and everything."

Now that local farmers are looking at the prospects of having all these leftover pumpkins, they're left searching for ways to help each pumpkin fulfill that destiny -- as well as to try and break even on the Halloween season.

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