Maryland's summer drought and wet September have meant a small pumpkin harvest for Halloween and the fall season, prompting farmers to go as far as New York to help meet the local demand.
"There is a problem with pumpkins: You can't get them," said Steven Danner of Danner's Market in Westminster.
"To my knowledge, every one of my suppliers is sold out now."
To help supply the demand for pumpkins during the week before Halloween, farmers and merchants are going to western New York to buy pumpkins to sell in Maryland, Delaware and Pennsylvania.
James Horak, who runs a farm across the Pennsylvania border, said his pumpkin crop is one-twentieth of last year's crop.
He said he has made three tractor-trailer runs to New York, bringing back 70 tons of pumpkins.
"I had a fairly good pumpkin crop -- to look at it -- on the first of September," he said. "Then the rain -- three solid weeks of rain -- and what pumpkins I had just destructed."
Last year, Horak said, some fields produced eight to 11 tons of pumpkins an acre. But this year "some fields, we didn't even bother to pick one pumpkin."
"I promised a man 200 tons," Horak said. "I produced less than 20 tons."
David Chilcoat, who runs a produce stand in Hunt Valley, is experiencing the pumpkin shortage also.
"I'm getting down pretty low," said Chilcoat, who operates Chilcoat Farms on the Mason-Dixon Line.
"I think by the end of the weekend, I'll be down to the end of my own pumpkins.
"I'm going to try to find some to buy next weekend, but everybody's getting pretty low."
However, William Foard, coowner of Valley View Farms, said he is not having pumpkin problems. His crop, he explained, is "probably overall the best we've had."
Foard said his pumpkins were saved because he irrigated his fields during the worst part of the drought in July.