It is Pumpkin Season – See What You Can Find This Year at Abbey Farms

Last year was our biggest pumpkin production year. Until this year. Our U-Pick Patch of slightly more than three acres is bursting with orange jack-o-lantern pumpkins. You’ll find all sizes and shapes; no doubt, with a bit of sleuthing, you’ll find the perfect one for your porch. Or, two. Or, maybe even three…

We are extra thankful that the growing season was kind to us, as our farm operations manager decided to grow another six acres of pumpkins and gourds! The farm staff picks each week to keep the store and park area stocked with a fantastic selection of pie and decorative pumpkins, along with a wild assortment of gourds.

Other than the gourds, which are $1 each, we charge a per pound price for the pumpkins. Jack-o-lantern pumpkins are 45¢ per pound and all specialty pumpkins cost 55¢ per pound.

Pumpkin Varieties at Abbey Farms in 2017

Even if you don’t plan to play at Pumpkin Daze, you can purchase all the pumpkins you’d like at our seasonal store, which is open daily. No admission price is required to shop! Look at what you will find:

Jack-O-Lantern and other Orange Pumpkins

Magic Lantern is dark orange, with a slightly upright shape, normally weighing 17 to 24 pounds.

Apollo is also dark orange, with medium ribbing and is a large-sized pumpkin. This round pumpkin averages 18 to 32 pounds, with a 12-inch diameter.

Aladdin is another large-sized pumpkin, with a round to tall shape. Dark orange, it is generally 12 to 15 inches in diameter and weighs 25 to 32 pounds.

Mystic Plus is a pie/school tour pumpkin with an average weight of five to seven pounds. It too, is a dark orange and has a round to slightly flat shape. Each child on a field trip receives one of these pumpkins!We also have mini, orange-colored pumpkins. You’ll find these on the gourd table and are priced at $1 each.

White Pumpkins

Crystal Star is a mostly round pumpkin bred to maintain its true white color (not turn blue or yellow at maturity) and will generally weigh 25 to 35 pounds.

Flat White Boer (Ford) is a beautiful, white stacking pumpkin. It weighs between 10 and 15 pounds and holds its color well. It has a thin, but sturdy shell with a dark orange flesh – fun to carve. Although often used for ornamental purposes, its sweet, nutty flavor make it a great eating pumpkin, too.

Baby Boo is our white miniature pumpkin. Although most of us decorate with it, the flesh is edible.

Specialty Pumpkins

With the expanded pumpkin acreage, our farm manager had a lot of fun pouring over seed catalogs and websites to choose the specialty pumpkin varieties. And… I had fun reading names when I looked up the planted varieties. Besides decorating, many of these pumpkins are excellent for cooking.

Although these seeds didn’t make it into our planter, I do like their fun names: Goose Bumps (warty), Red Warty Thing, Knucklehead Super Freak (warty), Mr. Fugly, Flatso, New England Cheddar, Mr. Wrinkles, Mrs. Wrinkles, and Speckled Hound. Some of the interesting white pumpkin names include Casper, Casperita (small), Moon Stacker, Moonscape and Stella Luna. Wouldn’t it be fun to name fruit and vegetable varieties?

We did plant these specialty pumpkins this year.

Turk’s Turban is really a winter squash, often used for decoration. It is a large, Aladdin-type squash, shaped like a turban. Delicious cooked, it generally weighs about five pounds. It will be a deep orange-red color, streaked with orange, white, red and green.

Rouge Vif d’Etampes (Cinderella) is a French heirloom pumpkin variety, said to be the artist’s inspiration for the pumpkin coach in Cinderella. Introduced into America in 1883, it has a dark, red color and is slightly flattened and heavily ribbed. Besides making wonderful autumn displays, the sweet orange flesh makes it great for pies and custards, too. Most of these ‘Cinderella’ pumpkins will weigh 10 to 25 pounds.

Blue Doll is an exotic blue pumpkin with deep ribbing. It is slightly square-shaped and weighs 20 to 25 pounds. Pair it alongside Porcelain Doll for non-traditional fall décor. Its sweet, deep-orange flesh is wonderful made into pies, soup and other culinary delights.

One Too Many is a fantastic name for this pumpkin! Have you ever woke up in the morning, looked in the mirror and thought, “My eyes look as though I had one too many?!” That is what this pumpkin mimics. The fruit’s skin has red “veins” that crawl across a white background. Most of these are round shaped, but you will find oblong fruit, too. The average weight is 20 pounds.

Warty Goblin is our choice this year for a pumpkin with warts. When ripe, this round-shaped pumpkin is dark orange color and covered in green warts. This pumpkin has a wide weight range, 8 to 20 pounds.Porcelain Doll is a naturally pink pumpkin. Because it is also a fundraiser, we want to share more of this pumpkin’s story, so we wrote a separate blog post. Read it here.

Gourds, Gourds, and More Gourds!

A fall favorite for decorating, gourds come in all shapes and sizes. There are plenty of color combinations to choose from as well. As with our pumpkins, the plants grew well, producing an display that we simply can’t put into words. You’ll need to visit our seasonal store to see for yourself!

The varieties of gourds, another plant under the immense Cucurbitaceae family, can include both hard shells and soft shells. Most are purely decorative, although throughout history, you’ll find gourds used for tools, water storage and musical instruments. The following are growing in our fields this year:

Autumn Wings (medium) has the shape of a spoon, but with wings. They are generally 2 ½ or 3 inches in diameter with a neck up to six inches long. We love the color variety, too.

Autumn Wings (large) is like the previous, but bigger. The necks can reach up to 12 inches long. Again, you will find wacky wings of all sorts, with warts and fantastic color combinations.

Gizmo may remind you of a starfish – with wings, warts and unique color combinations. Most will be three to five inches tall and six to eight inches wide at the tip of its wings.

All of our gourds are $1 each, so have fun creating your own unique mix.

We can’t wait to see what pumpkins you discover this year. Keep in mind, the seasonal store is open daily from 10 a.m. through 6 p.m. and is open late on Saturdays, until 10 p.m. Head to this web page for more information about our Pumpkin Daze!

Hashtags: #pumpkins, #fallfun, #communityfarm, #aurorail, #falldecorations, #pumpkinvarieties

Category: Pumpkin DazeBy Shirley MottOctober 9, 2017

Tags: Abbey FarmsAgri-tourismAurora IllinoisFarm Fresh NewsIllinois AgricultureKane County FarmsPumpkinsUrban Farm

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Aurora, IL 60502

630) 966-7775

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The farm is now closed until further notice.Thank you all for another great year!
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