CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Twice each day, workers at the Boone Hall Pumpkin Patch replenish their supply of pumpkins in the field.
"It's been a fantastic season so far," Operations Director Jadie Rayfield said. "We're into our third week now."
Many pumpkin patches across the country have raised their prices in response to a smaller crop from this past summer's drought. The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates the average retail price of a pumpkin is $4.80 -- 20 cents more than last year.
But the Boone Hall Pumpkin Patch has kept their prices steady at 49 cents per pound.
"We haven't raised our prices. We feel like if the families come in and enjoy the pumpkin patch and go out and pick their own pumpkins, we've kept the same prices," Rayfield says.
Many local pumpkin patches are run by churches, including Bethany United Methodist Church on James Island. Ranging from 50 cents to 50 dollars, their prices are set by a Native American reservation hundreds of miles away.
"All the pumpkins are raised in New Mexico by the Navajo Indians. They raise them for the churches to sell for profit," church member Bobbi Woods said.
While the price tag remains the same, Woods said the size of the gourds has increased.
"I guess they just sent us a letter saying that the pumpkins are bigger than they've been in previous years," Woods said. "I don't know if it's the growing conditions out there."