Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Today's Train of Thought- Pumpkin Patchwork, October 31, 2012

Today's train of thought takes us to New Jersey in far better times in the not-too-distant past. While one might associate the northeastern corner of the Garden State with a seemingly unending string of refineries, chemical plants and marshland there apparently are still some open spaces ideal for agriculture.

Take seasonal crops like squash and pumpkins, for instance. Despite the recent disaster that has affected the region, this was a pretty good year for the pumpkin harvest in New Jersey. Growing conditions are usually favorable enough that pumpkins can be grown in every county in New Jersey, from Montague to Cape May. Some of these are grown on family operated farms that offer hayrides or for a fee let you venture out into the field to pick your own pumpkins.

Here, Conrail Shared Assets train WPSA-31 is seen trundling past a pumpkin patch in the bourough of Freehold, NJ. Still in Conrail blue, Norfolk Southern GP38-2 #5286 heads past the field towing some mixed freight the day prior to Haloween in 2008. According to photographer and contributor Andrew Blaszczyk, all the good pumpkins in the field in the foreground had already been picked, leaving just misshapen ones and 'runts'.

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