Pumpkin crops doing well in the Bluegrass

By: Kari Hall Email
By: Kari Hall Email

Parts of the northeast are suffering from a severe pumpkin shortage due to Hurricane Irene. The heavy rain caused the crop to rot in the fields. And that has many in the Bluegrass wondering what if any impact that will have on one of Fall's biggest staples locally. It's been a wet year for central and eastern KY with nearly 15 inches of rain above normal. But we've also had a good mix of weather during the summer.

"The pumpkins are actually doing very well this year. We seem to have enough rain and enough dry periods to make it a very good crop," says owner of Bi-Water Farms and Greenhouse Steve Fister.

Steve Fister is a second generation farmer and has seen it all in the past. He says this year is looking like a very good one.

"The pumpkin prices are stable. They're about where the were last year so there's no ups or downs. it's a very stable market," says Fister.

Last year at this time we were in a drought. Stink bugs and other pests were a major problem. Leaves on the vines died early causing the bugs to eat on the pumpkins instead. That made for marked up and uneven colored pumpkins on some fields. This year the surplus of rain has allowed the leaves on the vine to stay green and the pumpkins are still growing.

Fister adds, "From this moment on I don't need any more rain. I need dry weather from this point on. Because the pumpkins are now mature they are sitting on more of the bare ground. So now we need dry weather so they don't go into a wet period and they don't rot on the ground."

Now is a great time to get your pumpkin. The season ends on Halloween.


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