In Sept. 26 IssueBy Kim GrahamRCN Reporter
Leaves are beginning to fall, cradled by the cool breezes of autumn and Joyce Haywood is set to decorate for the season at Joyce’s Pumpkin Barn on Gosser Ridge Rd.
Last weekend, the Joyce held her grand opening selling locally pumpkins, mums and much more but work began months ago with planting.
“We started growing gourds and stuff in early spring,” said Haywood.
Her friend and mentor, Pumpkin Joe Hancock from Monticello helped her to get started with her pumpkin barn.
“Joe and I have always grown gardens,” Haywood said. “He inspired me to do this.”
Hancock paints faces on many of the pumpkins with a skilled hand from years of experience.
“I used to paint about 8,000 pumpkins a year,” Hancock said.
Turning onto the driveway, visitors are greeted by a fall lawn arrangement with a smiling, buck toothed, 400 pound pumpkin grown by Haywood.
Along the driveway to the barn, 2,000 pumpkins are displayed across the lawn like a sea of orange washing in to meet the nearly 200 multicolored mums lining the walkway leading inside.
One step into Haywood’s barn is met with a burst of fall color from large brilliant orange and green bows to delicate wire lace bows. Handmade bows line the walls of the barn waiting to adorn local fall displays.
Hanging from walls inside the barn are colorful Indian corn and strawberry corn arrangements. Visitors may also purchase the ornamental corn individually.
Haywood grew numerous varieties of gourds including angel wing gourds, apple gourds, miniature pumpkin gourds and dipper gourds which are for sale at her pumpkin barn.
Also harvested from her ornamental garden are many types of flowers such as coxcomb and strawflowers.
Some fresh cut flowers have been dried and used in arrangements or can be purchased individually on wired picks to create your own fall floral.
“I pick the strawflowers when they’re fresh and put a wire in them,” Haywood said. “The flowers close up over the wire like they’re glued on it.”
Folks can find everything from the dainty floral arrangements and corn cob baskets to old fashioned dried mole beans, corn straw, corn fodder, and straw bales.
“There are nice pumpkin barns all around this lake,” said Hancock. “We’ve nominated Joyce’s as the one with class.”
School and church groups are invited to visit Joyce’s Pumpkin Barn.
“We give school and church discounts,” said Haywood. “All school and church groups are welcome.”
Joyce’s Pumpkin Barn is located at 155 Hwy. 3525 (Gosser Ridge Rd.), Russell Springs.
Hours of operation are Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. through the end of October.
For more information call 270-566-4225.