HULL, Iowa (KCAU) – With a summer drought and a late frost moving in, Siouxland farmers have been put to the test.
From big to small to bumpy, preparation at Pumpkins on Garfield start in early May.
Mark Kooima is the owner of Pumpkins on Garfield. He said his love for pumpkins started out as a hobby when he was younger and has now grown into a family business. This year Kooima said despite a drought, it’s been a pretty good harvest. He started his season two weeks early.
“We had a really good crop this year. I found that pumpkins prefer dry weather. We kind of cheat out here, we have center pivot irrigation that waters them once or twice a week when it gets dry and hot so that helps us too,” said Kooima.
Even with a late first frost headed our way, and half a patch still to pick on his farm, Kooima says he isn’t worried about his pumpkins.
“I think they will be okay it’s when it dips into the upper 20’s for a few hours that you want to cover things up pumpkin wise, like the tomatoes, those will be the first to be affected by the frost so we are picking our last little batch for us to enjoy,” said Kooima.
Kooima says, all-in-all, there are about one-hundred varieties of pumpkins, gourds, and summer squash in his shed. But for him, it’s a labor of love.