Why some farms, nurseries have less pumpkins this season

In California droughts and lack of workers has impacted business.

Just weeks before Halloween, pumpkins may be hard to come by in some parts of the U.S.

The owners of Jackson's Greenhouses and Garden Center told "GMA" they are experiencing a shortage but explained it just means they won't have extra pumpkins like in years past.

"Certain areas just have had bad years with crops because of the weather conditions," co-owner Annette Jackson said of their Topeka, Kansas, business. "We felt kind of fortunate to get these then when we found that there was a problem with other areas. I do know that there was some folks outside of Topeka that did lose a crop, and the raccoons even got in the crop."

Weather, blight and the pandemic have impacted gourd growing in some spots across the country, experts said.

But pumpkins are big business for farmers who harvested more than a billion pounds of pumpkins in just six states in 2020, according to the National Retail Federation. Plus, the agency reports that nearly half of Americans surveyed this year planned to carve a pumpkin.

Lafayette, California-based nursery owner Marty Martinez has bought pumpkins for his business for 25 years and told ABC News San Francisco station KGO that by the end of September, some prices were soaring.

"In some cases, it’s double, especially with specialty white ones that are very hard to come by," he told KGO.

Experts said a number of issues are to blame, including the lack of workers and shipping delays due to the pandemic that contributes to smaller supply. Plus, some farms have had to lay off workers and others are out of business.

"A lot of patches just went out of business," Martinez said.

Additionally, in parts of California, droughts caused a loss of pumpkin production.

Farmer John's Pumpkin Farm owner Danny Lopes told KGO, "we normally plant probably 10 acres, we only planted about half this year."

Many pumpkin lovers can still get their hands on the festive gourds in areas where pumpkins are plentiful, but may get spooked by the prices.

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