GREENE, N.Y. (WIVT/WBGH) – Today’s Food and Farm Showcase profiles a pair of cousins who are bringing a new option to Greater Binghamton as first-time farmers.
Twin Valley Farms is a U-Pick pumpkin patch on Route 12 in the Town of Greene that opened this year.
Manager Thomas Borst and his older cousin began planting three varieties of pumpkins along with mini pumpkins and gourds in late May and early June. They planted their seeds on mounds of earth that were set up in rows going up the hillside. Over 400 mounds and about 2,000 seeds in total. The first to plant were the Atlantic giants, which are pale in color and can grow to hundreds of pounds. There’s also Big Macs with a reddish hue and then traditional jack-o-lantern style pumpkins.
Borst says they’ve enjoyed their first foray into farming.
“I’ve helped grandparents and family members out with basic gardening and yard work, but I’ve never been a farmer. Kind of dove headfirst into it, did a little bit of research beforehand and we just went for it. We were pretty successful,” said Borst.
Borst says neither cousin had ever been to a U-Pick pumpkin patch before and figured customers would enjoy selecting and cutting their own. Customers pay by weight, a dollar a pound for pumpkins less than 50 pounds, and 75 cents a pound for over 50.
Borst says Twin Valley is located on their grandfather’s old farm. He says they were inspired by their grandpa’s old pumpkin patch.
“He was a very ‘It’s mine, don’t touch it’ kind of guy. ‘Don’t bother that, that’s mine. Don’t mess with it.’ So, he would never let us do anything here. Unfortunately, we lost him in 2019. Very sad but without him, we would never had this property and we would never had the idea to grow pumpkins,” said Borst.
Borst says the long-term goal is to also grow Christmas trees, but they take 5 to 7 years to mature. Next year, in addition to the pumpkins, they plan to grow a variety of produce and sunflowers.
Twin Valley Farms is open Monday through Thursday from 2 until dark and Friday through Sunday from noon to dark until Halloween, or they run out of pumpkins.
You can follow them at Twin Valley Farms on Facebook.