EcoTrack 11: Pumpkin crop is smaller but mighty

Report by Tara Hastings - email | bio

Posted by LS

OTTAWA LAKE, Mich (WTOL) - It's a gray fall day on the Gust Brothers Farm in Ottawa Lake, Michigan, but in the field there's a lot of orange.

"For as dry as it was this summer, we're pleasantly surprised," owner Dan gust tells us.

Gust and his family have been running this pumpkin farm for 15 years. They have no irrigation system, so they rely solely on mother nature. That means the crop can differ from year to year.

"The size is a little bit smaller this year because of the dry weather, but the quantity is decent and the quality is excellent."

No matter how good the crop is, the Gusts are always rewarded. "It's been a fun family project for us. The people that come from town, we let them go in the barn and see the animals. They seem to enjoy it."

On this day, kindergartners are learning about feeding animals, farming and, of course, pumpkins.

The dry summer kept many of the pumpkins from rotting. The crop actually sprouted again thanks to some heavy rain in September.

There's a lot of orange, but also a little green in the field. Green pumpkins formed during the heavy rains in September. Dan says the larger ones may be ready by the end of October.

There's already a lot of varieties to choose from: white, blue, big, small, even swan pumpkins. Some are already picked while others wait for you to do the honors.

From young to old, everyone is always searching for that perfect pumpkin.