Florence forecast prompts pumpkin deliveries

By  | 

MONTGOMERY CO., Va. (WDBJ7) It's mid-September, and Ikenberry Orchards and Country Store is stocking up on locally-grown pumpkins from Madison Farm.

But this year, some of Tyler Hawes' deliveries are coming a little earlier than usual.

"The first of this week, we thought it was going to be devastating as far as rain,' Gwen Ikenberry told WDBJ7, "so we were trying to get the pumpkins out of his field."

The pumpkin patch in Shawsville is about 50 yards from the Roanoke River. The original forecast probably would have flooded the field, but Hawes is breathing easier now.

He's hoping to avoid what happened four years ago, when he says 2,000 to 3,000 pumpkins floated down the Roanoke River "like giant orange bobbers."

"We started moving them as soon as the threat appeared very, very real," Hawes said Thursday afternoon. "It was kind of a prerogative to go ahead and get them out the door as fast as we could."

Unless we get hammered with heavy rain, Hawes now believes his crop will survive. He hopes he will still have plenty of product for his wholesale customers, and the pick-your-own operation the farm is opening along US 460 before the end of the month.