Pumpkin Farm has Been in the Family for 50 Years

Macfarlane Farm has been a staple in Joliet for two generations.

You have probably driven past it a million times. Right across Jefferson Street from the Joliet Regional Airport, is a farm that sells pumpkins, mums, gourds, hay and squash. Unlike a number of the other area pumpkin farms, the Macfarlane Pumpkin Farm does not have attractions, hayrides or corn mazes. They just sell the makings for fall celebrations.

"We fill a niche for the people who don't want all that commotion," Marilyn Macfarlane said. "The people who come are like, 'it's always so beautiful; we love it here."

Marilyn Macfarlane is married to Drew Macfarlane, whose family has owned the farm for 50 years. He is the second generation to own the farm and he and Marilyn took over ownership of the business in 1989.

Perhaps one of the more unusual items at the farm this year is the giant pumpkins. The farm had carried them in years past, but it has been a long time.

Drew Macfarlane said the giant pumpkins are a lot more work. While they are growing, the pumpkin flowers need to be clipped off the vine so only one pumpkin grows.

The farm also carries white pumpkins, which is just grown with a different seed.

In addition to pumpkins, the grounds of the farm are covered with mums that are for sale. They are the item that dictates when the farm opens to the public every year.

"Once the flowers are ready, that's when we decide to open," Marilyn Macfarlane said.

The farm is open from about 9 a.m. every day until dark, although they will stay open later as Halloween approaches.

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