Second Bumper Year in a Row for Northland Pumpkins

Baihly Warfield

October 06, 2015 09:38 PM

DULUTH, Minn. - After another weekend of beautiful fall weather, it was the perfect time to go pick up a few pumpkins for your porch or maybe even a pie.

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Derek Hoffbauer said it's the second bumper crop in a row for the pumpkins at Farmer Doug's place in Duluth. It was also a good year for local growers at fall festivals in the area.

Hoffbauer said growing pumpkins in the Northland isn't easy and takes a lot of experience.

"We've made some mistakes over the years. We have late frost and early frost here, and a late frost will wipe out your whole patch. And if you get a really hard one early, they can start to get soft too," Hoffbauer said.

The best pumpkins come from weather like we had this summer.

"It's the growing season and the conditions," Hoffbauer said. "We had a lot of water and heat, so the pumpkins grew well this year."

Of course, once the gourds come out of the ground, what happens next is up to you.

"We do the mini pumpkins, and some folks like to decorate with them around classrooms and offices and around their house," Hoffbauer said. "The pie pumpkins, which are kind of the medium pumpkins, people are baking with those."

Hoffbauer said if the perfect jack-o'-lantern pumpkin is what you're looking for, it should have a nice top with a stem and no soft spots so that it will stand up to carving.

This year, he also said he hopes people will remember to buy their pumpkins locally.

"Duluth has a lot of support for their local companies, local farmers, and we pride ourselves on being a local farmer," Hoffbauer said. "There's a big difference between your local dollar being spent with your local farmer and someone else. A lot more of that money stays in your local economy."

Farmer Doug's pumpkins and other seasonal crops will continue to be sold at the Duluth Farmers Market, which runs through Halloween.


Baihly Warfield

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