Pumpkin nuts (not to be confused with the “pumpkin nut” latte from Starbucks) need somewhere to enjoy the Great Pumpkin this fall, but where?
Ahead of Halloween and National Pumpkin Day on Oct. 26, LawnStarter ranked 2022’s Best Cities for Pumpkin Lovers.
We compared the 200 biggest U.S. cities based on seven pumpkin-friendliness factors. We looked for cities with easy access to pumpkin patches, pumpkin treats and beverages, and pumpkin-related events.
Find out which 10 cities squashed the competition (and which 10 had a lack o’ lanterns) below, followed by some highlights and lowlights from our report. (See where your city ranks.)
Highlights and Lowlights:
(Pumpk)inspired Portland, Oregon: Step aside, Floydada, Texas, and Morton, Illinois! You might be the national and world capitals of pumpkin, but for the second consecutive year, the City of Roses reigns supreme as our No. 1 destination for pumpkin lovers.
Taking the pumpkin cake in the “Access” category, Portland boasts the highest number of pumpkin patches, in addition to bakeries, coffee shops, and breweries galore serving up pumpkin-flavored goodies. The city also ranked No. 22 in Google searches for pumpkin-related keywords, reflecting residents’ enormous appetite for the fall favorite.
Go Big or Gourd Home: Big cities squashed the competition this year, which caught us off gourd. In 2021, our top pumpkin cities varied from large population centers like New York to small towns like Bridgeport, Connecticut. This year, however, major cities like Los Angeles (No. 2), Miami (No. 4), and Chicago (No. 8) dominated our top 10.
That’s because of a major recalculation of our ranking that gave bigger cities the upper hand, especially in Access. Smaller cities boast more pumpkin patches, but larger cities are packed with more options for pumpkin treats.
Rough Patch for the South: You’d think the pie-loving South would be a better region for pumpkin lovers, but you’d be wrong. Making up our bottom 10 cities are mostly Southern cities. In last place is Macon, Georgia, bested by Laredo, Texas, by a mere 0.003 points, but that’s nothing to gloat about when Texas’ state squash is literally the pumpkin.
There’s a perfectly logical explanation to this outcome, though. The South is notoriously bad for growing pumpkins, mostly because of extreme heat and humidity in the region. Disease is another problem.
Our full ranking and analysis, along with a fun Pumpkins by the Numbers infographic, can be found here: https://www.lawnstarter.com/blog/studies/best-cities-pumpkin-lovers/