20 September 2011 § 1 Comment
Did you hear that the Northeast might be facing a pumpkin shortage?
Last weekend at the Farmers’ Market in New Jersey I was struck by the sight of pumpkins. In my mind on a sunny late summer Saturday it seemed too early. I realized it is mid-September so I really should not be surprised by their appearance.
This morning I heard on the radio that a high number of pumpkin patches were destroyed in New York and Vermont by Hurricane Irene. Pumpkin farmers were having a hard time already this year as heavy rain in spring meant the planting had to be delayed a few weeks, and now those young pumpkins are at risk if we have a cold snap. Also they have on store shelves pronto. It is a bit like Cinderella leaving the ball at midnight – the pumpkins have to be in the stores end September and sold by Halloween otherwise they are only good for composting.
While I’m sure the kids will be fine this year without proper jack-o’-lanterns. We will just have to get creative with carving other vegetables. Anyway back in my day we would carve rutabagas (or swedes as they were known over there). Really, truly rutabagas as pumpkins don’t grow in Wales.
The reality for the farmers that have lost their crops in Irene is very harsh. Spare a thought for farmers like RSK Farm of Prattsville, NY who have lost 30 acres of crops, and 14 acres of good topsoil were washed away.
Now more than ever your local farmer needs your support.