orange sweatshirt Fremont: 72-year-old keeps pumpkin fields full, kids smiling at Ardenwood
Joe Perry is a detail-oriented person who runs out of the truck to fix the lettuce sign that dropped in the last heavy rain.Joe Perry is the last place to grow vegetables in southern Alameda.He runs 60 acres of land at Ardenwood Regional Park in Fremont.10/20/04 Mike capaka/Chronicle was not interested in the details and Joe Perry ran out of the truck to fix the lettuce sign that had fallen in the last heavy rain.Joe Perry is the last place to grow vegetables in southern Alameda.He runs 60 acres of land at Ardenwood Regional Park in Fremont.10/20/04 Mike Capka/Chronicle reduced the number of forklifts loaded with a box of fresh pumpkins carefully passing through a group of chatty kids from the field.The kids are excited because they will be riding a real tractor on a real farm and driving the steering wheel with real farm hands, each of them coming home with a small head-sized commemorative pumpkin.But they are not as excited as the guy with a ball cap, leather boots, and an oil cloth jacket, even though he has done it many times before at this Halloween ceremony."Let go!"The driver waved his right arm to the preschool and kindergarten children, saying in a soft, high voice of a man that his vocal cords stretched out due to overwork.But when the wheel of the forklift is rotated through the rear, there is a grandfather-like spark in this sentence, adjusted from below with laughterHeavy rain muck stained by Hay.Meet Joe Perry, the piper in the pumpkin field.The job will never grow old for him.As long as the pumpkin appears in the field every fall, he can be sure that he will never grow old in the true sense.Without farmer Joe, Halloween is not the same in the south of Alameda County.Perry Farm-Joe Perry is Perry's farm.Nearly 73 in himyear-From the quality of the soil (all organic) to the maintenance of the equipment (he maintained two farm tractors from 1940 seconds ), how do seasonal workers feel about their work (he fired only three people in 40 years of farming ), go to the harvest and marketing of Perry lettuce for organic groceries in California and southwest.He also did the annual pumpkin patch entertainment in his way, knowing that a child had to turn it into reality: The red minivan was printed with "Perry Farm ", let the parents pull down from the giant pumpkin, a piece of paper --High Highland sits in a stand with a corn pole roof, and perry sits between the big wheels of the coughed John Deere, taking the children directly into the broccoli and the Cabbage Row with homemade Scarecrow and hayrides, perry leans back to tell.Workers in pumpkin fields-They are also working.-It's Perry's relatives, who are on duty wearing orange jerseys and South melon beans.Every October, thousands of children gather at Perry Farm from East Bay, South Bay and San Francisco, and gather together from public schools, family schools and schools for the deaf.Perry knows that his pumpkin fields are the only chance for many of them to experience a real farm.Or a real farmer.From San Leandro to the south of Alameda County in Fremont for decades, it has been an agricultural area as rich as the Salinas Valley.There is no better soil anywhere, but as cities and suburbs cover the land, water and equipment are becoming more expensive and the demands of consumers are getting higher and higher, and farmers are almost gone.County once-The legendary cherry and apricot garden have disappeared, and Carnation growers have been eliminated by foreign competition.According to the county Department of Agriculture, in 1942, there were 25,000 acres of truck crops in Alameda County, and growers transported nearly a million boxes of broccoli, taking care of 7 million square feet of flower greenhouses.In 2002, there were only 109 acres of truck crops left.Perry seems to be the last on the East Bay plain, if not the last, the main grower, working 59 acres in the rich Alameda Creek drainage system with mission peaks from the east, coyote Mountain area park is located in the West.The land is located in the Ardenwood Regional Park and Perry is leased from the East Bay Regional Park.In the community of the Bay Area, independent farmers who do anything are commonplace.The harvest season at Perry Farm is one of the last places to see such a number.Perry, a slim man.Like an action and a head.The first gait, as a plantation owner, employer, is troubled by weather and bills, mechanics and gardeners, fathers and grandfathers, educators and entertainers.The day after the first heavy rain this fall, Perry improvised to keep the pumpkin patch running smoothly.He and his driver began to squeeze quickly with Yvonne puvnik at the park, Yvonne puvnik on the paved roads of the park insteadThe three flatbeds were on, with fresh hay.The driver is Joe, son Doug Perry and Kevin Payne, 41, who is a laid-off workerSoftware engineer in Silicon Valley.Penn visited the pumpkin field last Thursday with his son and was hired to drive a tractor the next day, although not paid much, but it was a dream job.Joe's brother, John, retired after his career in Pacific Bell, played the role of pumpkin cake Usher and director.He was wearing an orange jersey and a black hat with a pumpkin pattern.His job is to keep people and equipment running."I need a rebound in this matter," John shouted to Joe as the first carriage was ready to load."Do you know where the guys put it?"Joe said a gentle barnyard nickname from the children's ears and found rebounds."Well, let's fill it up," John said while working with a wrench at the bolt on the engine.Doug is ready to pull back the clutch of his box MX 110."Ready?Let's go!He said the tractor was traveling along the way with 30 or more adults and children bouncing around the multicultural population in bed.Drive school buses and SUVs from addenwood Avenue.The second and third riders broke in the south wind and lined up under orange, black and white flags.Perry Farm will host 1,000 children by the end of the morning, a typical October.Mothers took photos of their children in the Scarecrow and in several acres of pumpkins organized according to Perry's visually rigorous system, almost extending to the farm stands.Perry's small team consists of 18 carts painted red and 18 small trucks in red.What would the children see if they rode through the fields?An organic farm can be seen during the peak harvest.Perry's rows of red lettuce sparkled in the rain last time.Blue-Green broccoli tops rise from broken, darkbrown soil.The Kill deer screamed, and a group of crew harvested cauliflower in a distant field.On a dry day, the children came down to feel the dirt."We pulled a few carrots for them and asked them to bring them back to rest," Doug said .".What is invisible outside the field is the beehives that produce pollinators for Perry's 15 to 20 acres of pumpkin.Perry's field visit is not divorced from the reality of plant reproduction.In an interview last year, Perry strolled through one of his pumpkin fields and turned the flowers over to see which flowers had been pollinated.He commented on the anatomy of pumpkin flowers."They're like us, you can't believe it," he said .""We are very much like pumpkins."Perry started growing in Ardenwood in 1985 and organic food in 1990 because he thought it would be healthier for his family and customers.He takes pride in not using chemicals and is proud of the variety and taste of his lettuce and melon.He planted about 70 kinds of vegetables and picked the best one.Tasting planting the next year.He likes traditional varieties."They won't change, they are reliable," he said ."The organic produce market has allowed Perry to continue his business, replacing stores he used to rely on, such as local canned tomatoes and pickles.He said his goal is to sell organic products at traditional prices.During the harvest, Perry started working from 6 in the morning.m.till 8 p.m.On Sunday, he set out at 3, stayed at home, or took his wife to the show.His day began with breakfast he had for years.-Oatmeal, grapefruit, cranberry and papaya.On Tuesday and Thursday, he was on the Nimitz Highway, delivering to a big customer in Berkeley, early enough to beat the worst commute."At the end of the year, I don't know if my salary is more than the workers," he said ."."I don't want to complain.This is the case.Perry's family crossed Angel Island from the Azores to the Bay Area.Like all their neighbors, the people on the farm settled in the then small town of Washington, and are now at the center of Fremont.He said his mother was an Angel and his father did everything from making White Zinfandel to trimming the horseshoe."We made our own blood sausage," Perry said .""We eat eggs in lard.We eat chicken every week.-The oldest chicken, of course."Every May 1, Perry's father borrowed $500 from Bank of America, and that's what he needed before he got it.Perry doesn't remember that money was a concern when he grew up.Young Perry is natural in agriculture.At the age of 13, he began to follow a horse and won two agricultural awards in high school.His farm coach is a man named Jed oxsboro."Great people," Perry said ."Take his work seriously.He did not eat cattle.Perry's father has an old radio."When the star-We will stop and put our hands on our hearts."Now, this is going to be an old story," he said ."John Perry steals the second round of BlackRock on the rebound."Head 'em out!He said, then turned back to the corral to make the waiting customers happy.He held a little pumpkin under one arm."When you come back from hayride, you get a pumpkin as big as your head," he said .".While talking about agriculture, John said his brother was Joe the farmer."Everything here is organic," he said .""Even a pumpkin.We don't have any chemicals on our crops.John told the children that the "sugar pie" is the best breed of pumpkin pie.He said the delicious pumpkin was great.Fried with brown sugar and butter.Just then Joe stopped at the end of another hayride.He climbed down from the tractor and threw a wrench into the hay pile."It's hard as a farmer," John told the children ." But they are looking at the tractor.As the children of Belmont Oaks College climbed up his carriage, Joe called as he walked.He had a hole in his jeans pocket, where he put his wallet, and the red lining of his coat through the hole in his sleeve."I like the job," said John ." The customer returned to the car and pulled two red trucks full of pumpkins.Then it opened again."Good Morning, Montessori Children," he said .""I'm glad you made it."Joe's sister Diane Borman followed the school group with the clipboard after quitting her job as a triage nurse.She wore a wool pumpkin bean.There are also two relatives, Gloria Bega and Shirley Mikel, who work at the gift shop."Joseph is the only farmer left," said Mikel ."."He loves it.I don't know what will happen if he really retires."Perry said he was not going to give up."I like to do this," he said .""I am not a sports fan. I have no hobbies.I don't know what else I will do."Joe Perry, the last or almost last vegetable grower in one of the most affluent valleys of nature in the Bay Area, boarded another Halloween hay and loaded the tractor. Sit between high spinning wheels and turn to point out the blacksmith's shops, goat pens and other attractions along the way."Don't you want to live in the back?"Farmer Joe said to a child when he climbed down after riding a bike."Nice, huh?"Pumpkin Patch for Joe Perry, today to Sunday, Perry Farm, aldenwood Regional Park, Fremont, 34600 aldenwood Avenue.9 a.m.-9 p.m.Nine o'clock A.M. today and Saturdaym.to 5 p.m.Sunday.After dark tonight and Saturday, Hayrides is $2, $3.(510) 790-2659.www.Organic food.com.