FUQUAY-VARINA, N.C. (WNCN) – If you’re on the hunt for pumpkins, they may be in limited supply this season.
“There’s no need to panic, but I think it’s going to be tight, a tight market,” said Robert Naylor, owner of Naylor Family Farm and Maze in Fuquay-Varina. “A shortage, I don’t know, that’s a little harsh of a word. But I think the market is going to be tight for a good quality pumpkin.”
Naylor has been farming in North Carolina for 36 years. He tells CBS17, months of heavy rain is now hindering pumpkin harvests here in the Tar Heel State and along the East Coast.
He explained, “We had over 30 some inches of rain over the last three or four months and the average annual rainfall for North Carolina is around 40 inches.”
Naylor’s Fuquay-Varina farm typically yields between three and four tons of pumpkins per acre, per season. But this year, he says his harvest is cut almost in half.
“The biggest issue as far as yield and quantity is that they [pumpkins] weren’t able to pollinate successfully,” he explained. “They had a lot of blooms and blossoms, but bees, they try their best to work during a rainy day, but I don’t think they were able to successfully complete the pollination.”
Another issue is the indirect effect the pandemic is having on transportation.
“All the freight haulers and transfer trucks are focused on hurricane areas and COVID-19 supplies,” said Naylor. “ Sofreight has almost doubled since last year on pumpkins. So that affects the liquidity of it ya know?”
With pumpkins likely in limited supply, and people anxious to get out and do something “normal” again, Naylor’s advice is to grab a gourd before they’re all gone.
Click here for more information on the Naylor Family Farm and Corn Maze.