Fall Travel

A Swiss Pumpkin Patch

Given that we’re announcing our Italy vacation contest winner tomorrow on the blog, I’m posting Photo Friday a bit early.

Although we love living in Europe, we are homesick this month for Halloween festivities and traditions. I went in search of pumpkin patches around where we live outside of Lausanne and found this …

Local growers put a wonderful variety of pumpkins out on the street or in front of their farms in the countryside.  Here’s the fascinating bit—it’s self-service! Not a soul is there to monitor or manage the pumpkin sales.

All the pumpkins are labeled with a price and you simply calculate what you’ve loaded in your car on the honor system.

I’m smiling just picturing this system in place back home in Northern California. The pumpkins would not be there in the morning and the cash box would be … I fear … empty. Sigh, am I just a cynic?

If you’re on the road this month, check out Dana’s great nationwide (US) round-up of  pumpkin patches and farms with activities for all ages and her 2010 Halloween events for kids list.  And, if you’re in and around London be sure and read Anna’s list of things to do around Halloween in London with kids.

Happy almost Halloween!

For more Photo Friday posts, head over to our friends at Delicious Baby.

Relevant Links:

Best San Francisco Bay Area pumpkin patches

Fall family travel, favorite leafpeeping experiences

10 great fall family getaways

Start a Discussion

  • Hi Amie,
    Loved the pumpkin photo. I visited Lausanne back in 2002 so I just had to submit a comment. I am always impressed by their “honor system”. Living in L.A., I would have to sadly agree with you about the missing money box and pumpkins in the a.m. Keep writing great content!

  • lovely shot of the pumpkins. never had thought of them in connection with Switzerland, somehow. are there particular Swiss dishes made with pumpkins?

  • Yes, I think you’re being a cynic! Self-service farm stalls are actually not uncommon in California. I’ve seen it in operation at Swanton Berry Farm on Highway 1 south of San Francisco – even for their jars of jam, which are not cheap. I’ve also seen it in operation at a fruit & veg stall in the Anderson Valley, as we were driving to Mendocino on the coast north of SF. And I’ve only lived here a year or so.

  • Great post, I’m glad you found your pumpkins – hope they made you feel a bit less homesick! Great that it’s an honesty system, we saw that quite a lot in Italian agriturismos for wine etc.

  • A lovely pumpkin story…They have honesty boxes like this in Spain as well. I’m afraid I share some of your cynicism…!

  • The last time I remember seeing one of these honesty box operations was at a small shop on a northern Michigan herb farm about 10 years ago.
    I do like the odd-colored pumpkins. I got one in classic orange, and another in a mottled orange-and-white. Love the different colors and shapes of the squash, too.

  • i LOVE these photos – and yes, make a pumpkin gratin! i remember my SIL made one that was so incredibly delicious – she’d gotten the recipe when she lived in france.
    here in mid-michigan, there are self-service boxes all over the place. 🙂

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