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Work at The Farmstead continues after ICCU purchases property

While fall is still months away, employees at the Farmstead have been hard at work making sure everything is in order.

MERIDIAN - In July, a lot of us probably aren't thinking about pumpkins and corn mazes, but for everyone at The Farmstead this is the time they really see the fruits of their labor.

It's an operation that isn't going to slow down any time soon, although the land that has been The Farmstead's home for several years was officially purchased by the Idaho Central Credit Union on July 12.

"For this year rest assured we'll be right here - the pumpkins are growing and the corn's up and everything's in place for this year," said Jim Lowe, owner of The Farmstead.

So for now, it's business as usual.

"We're watching the field, so when there's a small window for us to get through with the tractor, it might be late at night or early in the morning and we get on it," Lowe said.

Lowe and his crews have been busy since the start of summer cultivating and caring for hundreds of pumpkins.

"Weeds are a never-ending challenge and then keeping enough water to them," Lowe said. "Not too much so they drown but just enough so they can thrive."

It's a delicate balance, and timing is everything.

"It all points to and leads to this great culmination of the harvest," Lowe said. "For a successful crop we have to start at the very end of one season to prepare for the next year."

It's an annual process that Lowe and his family have been a part of for more than two decades. A majority of that time has been spent alongside the interstate in Meridian.

"It's good visibility and access for people throughout the Valley," said Lowe.

At some point in the next couple years, you won't see the corn maze from your car driving by.

"We farm elsewhere in the Valley too, south of here in Meridian and Kuna and it's always been a part of our long-range plan to move this operation to part of our home farm."

Because the land was being leased by The Farmstead, it was always a matter of when, not if, the property would be purchased and they'd have to make that move.

"There's been a lot of questions about 'What's going to happen, is this the last year?'" said Lowe. "No this is not the last year we're going to keep doing this as long as we can. This is our life, this is our love."

Lowe says that life won't stop when the ICCU breaks ground on a regional call center and mortgage center in its place.

"When the time is right, when there's development that happens here we'll move out to our home farm," said Lowe.

Until then, Lowe says they will continue traditions at the popular location.

"We get to see people come out, enjoying and making memories," Lowe said.

Laura Smith, a spokeswoman for ICCU, says they decided to purchase the land because as an institution, they've grown and this is the next step in making sure they are able to serve their growing membership.

There isn't an exact timeline for when The Farmstead will relocate, but Lowe says no one has to worry about missing out at the popular location this year. He says the best way to know when that happens is by joining their email list.

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