You can now add pumpkins to your list of victims of the California Drought, which has lasted since January. Pumpkin crops are ripening sooner this season, causing many to fear that prices will rise and the quality of the crop will suffer during this season Halloween. California is the second largest producer of pumpkins in the country, behind Illinois.
Pumpkin farmers have had to pump extra water out of the ground in order to cultivate their crops this year, which will lead to higher prices for California-grown pumpkins. In an interview with NBC News, farmer Wayne Martin estimates his prices will rise about 15 percent this year due to the drought.
In addition to the pumpkin problem, other Halloween festivities appear to be suffering as well, with some corn mazes not as lush as they have been in previous years. However, some giant pumpkin growers with their own private wells continued to annual tradition.
In addition to raised prices and smaller crops, there is more worry about the 2015 crops. Many are worrying that if there is little or no rain during the winter that there may be major problems next year. If the drought continues into the winter, it is even conceivable that 2015 could be a year where growing pumpkins in California is prohibitively expensive, if possible at all. Pumpkin season runs from April–October each year, which means that time is limited for the California climate to recover from the current drought conditions.
Only time will tell how long the drought will continue, though we all hope that it comes to an end as soon as possible.
What are some of your favorite Halloween festivities?