Pumpkins in the City

We're in the throws of an annual migration. Birds and butterflies, and assorted condo dwellers with second homes in Florida, hurry south to escape the coming cold. But squashes of all sorts are leaving their summer homes in the fields and farms of the region and migrating into the City.

They first started appearing on the streets a few weeks ago. The odd gourds, at first, at the corner deli, laid out in come hither poses to bring them home. Then on the stands at the farmers' market. Eventually penetrating into the inner recesses of New York's grocery stores and chain pharmacies. The migration is now in full swing. Yes, the curcurbits are on the move.

At the head of the annual trek is, of course, Curcurbita pepo. The rotund orange pumpkin is king. You'll find some on stoops, at doorways, on tables, looking at you from windows. Lit up as Jack-o'-lanterns. Carved this way or that. Or not. There are the scary pumpkins and the cute. Some spend time hanging with their squashy friends. Others just chill alone.

Forget the ephemeral changing of the leaves or those ubiquitous mum balls. Nothing seems to say the season more than the annual influx of bright, cheery pumpkins. Whether it's Halloween or Thanksgiving, or everything in between, the pumpkin reigns supreme. Even in the City. This is the season when the Big Apple becomes the Big Pumpkin.