We ought to take outdoor walks, to refresh and raise our spirits by deep breathing in the open air. ~Lucius Annaeus Seneca, Roman Stoic philosopher and statesman
The dates for this year’s walk are Oct. 6-19, and the “rules” are simple: take a walk, post about what you see, include some pretty pictures, and link to Robin, who will round up the links so we can all visit each other’s blogs and enjoy walking together.
This year (because the trees aren’t cooperating with Fall color), I’m taking you to Arthur, Illinois (the Heart of Amish Country), to visit The Great Pumpkin Patch, a working farm owned by the McDonald family who immigrated from Scotland in the mid-1800s. Six generations later (150 years!), it’s evolved into a business of commercial pumpkin production and the preservation of rare gourd seeds.
If you love pumpkins as much as I do, prepare to be amazed!
Here, they grow more than 300 varieties of pumpkins, squash, and gourds from more than 30 countries around the world. There are green knotty varieties:
and white ones:
and pumpkins on ladders:
There are pumpkins in stacks:
and pumpkins in rows:
The Great Pumpkin Patch has become a popular destination for school field trips, area residents, and tourists. The owners have erected numerous captivating displays, including this Tower of Pumpkins:
and this Pumpkin Tree:
and even a Noah’s Ark:
There are mazes of corn, soybeans, and straw bales, a mild haunted barn to explore, and a restored one-room schoolhouse from the early 1900s. There’s a gift shop, a museum, a seeds store, live entertainment on weekends, and a bakery (where the smells alone are guaranteed to make your mouth water). And there are farm animals like this little goat:
and a gobbling turkey:
and a happy llama (isn’t he the cutest thing?!?):
And there are garden mums … more than 5,000! — like this group of colored beauties:
and this batch:
and this “quilt”:
Have you ever seen a field of pumpkins growing on the vine? The Great Pumpkin Patch is one Linus would consider very sincere:
I hope you’ve enjoyed our trip. It’s fun to get outdoors and see new things. As we leave The Great Pumpkin Patch, here’s a reminder we were in Amish Country: