Much needed rain fell Wednesday with more on the way. Is it too little, too late for this fall's pumpkin harvest? That great pumpkin may still be found.
"It'll be a little damp, we just got done watering." There's something oddly unfamiliar sticking to the bottoms of Paul Wenninghoff's boots and that’s mud. The price for Wenninghoff's 1/4 parcel or one like it? "To put a well, a pump and a new pivot system to irrigate the majority of that parcel, you better have $100,000 ready."
That's the cost of business, especially when your business relies on the weather to cooperate, like the fall pumpkin harvest. “Nice sized pumpkin, probably list this as basketball-sized or larger."
Ask customers, as this summer Mother Nature was less than helpful. “The tomatoes look, well, there aren't that many tomatoes,” says Carolina Keffer of Omaha. “I think the drought really did the tomatoes in and I know it did mine in."
“It's amazing that we have anything to eat here today,” says Carole Julian of Omaha. “They wouldn't have it if they didn't have irrigation because we've had no rain to speak of."
Wenninghoff says Wednesday’s clouds and rain provided a much needed break from the heat for his crops, including the pumpkins, but he says his season is far from over, thanks to his multi-thousand dollar irrigation system. There will be pumpkins through Halloween.
Wenninghoff admits they may have a little less and slightly smaller pumpkins, but it comes with the territory. “You just got to roll with the punches when you are in agriculture. You have good years and not so good years. That is why when it is a good year you put a little something away for the not so good year."
Wenninghoff says his Omaha farm will be open through the end of October and ready for the annual pumpkin harvest.