We’re a few days out from the official start of autumn, and while the temperatures still spell summer, the fall season has already kicked in for many Pumpkin Spice Lovers. Leaves are turning yellow, the Texas heat is letting up, and the Dallas Arboretum’s miniature village made of gourds is assembled. It’s fall, y’all, and it’s time for some safe and seasonal fun.
The Dallas Arboretum’s 15th annual pumpkin installation, The Art of the Pumpkin, is on view September 19 through November 1. The elaborate display is anchored by four 20-foot-tall pumpkin houses, surrounded by more than 90,000 decorative pumpkins, gourds, and squash, along with 150,000 autumn flowers. The spectrum of golden and orange hues almost makes up for Dallas’ lack of fall foliage.
The Arboretum’s herb and vegetable garden, known as A Tasteful Place, is also participating in the fall festival. Expect weekly cooking along with floral and horticulture demonstrations. Live bands play in the garden every weekend afternoon.
Check the calendar for upcoming special events: September 20 brings an Oktoberfest celebration with complimentary beer samples, local and traditional food vendors, and live music.
The Dallas Farmers Market has fully shifted into fall mode with a big pumpkin patch and bushels of seasonal produce. The Shed is filled with more than 25 pumpkin varieties hailing from Floydada, in West Texas. The patch will stay up through Halloween, open Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. You’ll also find locally-sourced apples, tasty baked goods, and more supplies for a fall feast. Arrive early in the day for the best selections.
The Blase Family Farm in Rockwall is opening its pumpkin patch by appointment only this year to encourage social distancing and prevent crowds. The family-friendly farm opens to the public from September 26 to November 1 with a large variety of pumpkins to purchase, a petting zoo, a hay maze, hayrides, and children’s story time. Tickets are $9 per person and must be reserved in advance.
Just west of DFW Airport in Grapevine, Hall’s Pumpkin Farm and Corn Maze opens for the season on October 2. The farm has a big pumpkin patch with different sizes and varieties of gourds for sale, plus scarecrows, haystacks, a vintage tractor, and farm animals available for photo ops. The farm also offers a legit corn maze (the one at Blase Family Farm is geared toward kids) that spans two acres and stands nine feet tall. There are also hay rides on Wednesday and Friday through Sunday. At Hall’s Pumpkin Farm, each activity requires a separate ticket–hay rides are $3 to $5, the maze is $5, and admission to the farm is $3 to $5. The farm is a cash-only business. No professional photography or outside food is allowed.
Shadow Creek Pumpkin Farm in Midlothian combines the pumpkin patch experience with some fair-inspired fun. In addition to tons of gourds, a corn maze, hay rides, farm animals, and autumn photo ops, there are games and activities like the hay bale jump, the giant pumpkin jump pad (an orange, 2,500-square-foot trampoline contraption), hay hill slides, pumpkin bowling, and more. Visitors are welcome to bring their own food and refreshments, but there are also concessions available for purchase. All the activities are included in the $10 tickets. The farm will be open Saturdays and Sundays through November 1. Cash is preferred; MasterCard and Visa are accepted.