Pumpkins primed for picking

Dave Mathieson
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Pumpkin growers reaping rewards for efforts

AMHERST - Pumpkin season has arrived and business was brisk Saturday and Sunday at the pumpkin U-Pick set up by first time growers Matt Casey and Josh Tannahill, both of Springhill.

"The response has been really good," Tannahill said on Sunday, as they helped people select pumpkins from the 3,000 that grew over the summer.

With help from family and friends the two budding entrepreneurs planted 6,200 pumpkins seeds on three acres of land just above the Rupelen farm located in Rodney.

"It took a couple of days to plant the seeds," Tannahill said. "One evening the whole family was up here."

Casey is 19-years-old and Tannahill is 18-years-old, and their grandparents run the Rupelen farm.

"We grew up on the farm, so we've always been active in agriculture," Casey said.

They both attend the Nova Scotia Agricultural College in Truro where Casey studies Agriculture Business Management and Tannahill studies Dairy Business Management.

It was Casey's idea to try their hand at growing pumpkins.

"A buddy of mine grows pumpkins in the Masstown area and he grew some for Masstown Market," Casey said. "So we thought we'd give it a try."

Other pumpkin growers he knows say this year's crop wasn't as good as other years.

"The land wasn't dried out enough," Casey said.

Next year the cousins plan to expand their operation and plant 10,000 seeds.

"We'll have the U-Pick but we also hope to get contracts selling them at the local supermarkets," Casey said.

For now they are more than happy with the steady flow of business at the U-Pick.

They will be open again Thursday and Friday from 5 to 7 p.m., weather permitting, and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The cost of a pumpkin is either $3 or $4, depending on the size.








Organizations: Nova Scotia Agricultural College

Geographic location: Springhill, Rodney, Truro Masstown

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