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Our Blog

Fun Facts

Raising Our Next Generation

A personal note from Ben Bear: My sister is a co-author of a book called “House of the Sun”. However….. while I love my sister that’s not a good enough reason to share anything with our customers. Rather this is a book on parenting and it is important to me for some very personal reasons […]

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Meet Our Staff

New Wholesale Crew

A little note from Darren: I have spent over half my life working at Meadowbrooke Gourds. I started in the mid-’90s like a strawberry picker and worked my way to lead our sales team for the past 16 years. When you go on a job interview and tell them that you have been working with […]

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Fun Facts

Fall Fest 2016

Fall is right around the corner and I don’t know about you but I am ready to bring out the sweaters and sit by the bonfire on a cool starry night. At Meadowbrooke, this also means that Fall Fest is quickly approaching. The dates are September 24 & 25 and October 1 & 2, 2016. […]

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Fun Facts

Fall Create Your Own How to Register

Our Fall Create Your Own is right around the corner. Many of you know that this is our annual Fall event. Our experienced crafters will help you make wonderful fall creations such as; pumpkins, witches, scarecrows, and turkeys. This event is for the entire family and all ages and skill levels will enjoy making their […]

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Behind The Scenes

The Traveling Salesman

Not often do I get the opportunity to visit the stores that carry Meadowbrooke Gourds. Most of my interactions with our stores are over the phone where orders are placed and stories are told about how well last year’s gourds sold for our many vendors. When I do get to meet a customer face to […]

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Fun Facts

The Amazing Gourd Plant Game Rules and Tips

This will be the final time to make a guess for our amazing gourd plant game. Our plant has set its fruit and is growing very slowly at this time. We are also facing some disease issues that are starting to stunt its growth. I have placed an extension on top of the telephone pole […]

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Fun Facts

The Amazing Gourd Plant

Many people have asked me over the years “How long will a gourd vine grow?” or “How much space in my small garden should I dedicate to growing a gourd plant?” My answer has always been that one gourd plant will take over your whole garden. The vines grow so long that they would reach […]

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All About Gourds

Gourd Growing Time Lapse

In 2013, we thought it would be a really neat idea to do a video that shows how gourds grow. We know from growing gourds for so many years how gourd vines can totally take over everything in its path. The video begins in May in the greenhouse as the gourds are starting to sprout […]

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Behind The Scenes

Our 2016 Meadowbrooke Calendars

About two years ago, many of you may remember getting a Meadowbrooke calendar in the mail. I worked with Emily at Pixel and Hammer in Carlisle to create a very nice calendar showcasing pictures of our gourds from our catalog. I heard back from a few of you saying how nice the calendar was but […]

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Behind The Scenes

Meadowbrooke’s 2015 Staycation!

Last year, I wrote a blog on our exciting company trip to Key West. Well, this year some of the most asked questions are “where did you go on your trip? what did you do? and why didn’t we hear anything about it?”. For those that are new to our company, each year we shut […]

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Meet Our Staff

Meet Ashley Bear, Our Next Gourd Farmer In Training.

For the entirety of her life, Ashley “Sweet Pea” Bear, has watched her father and mother run the family business of Meadowbrooke Gourds. She was born just as the business began, and from the day she was old enough to pick up a gourd, she has been working in some capacity in the family business. […]

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Gourd Tips

Planting Your Gourd Plant In Your Garden

Planting your gourd in your garden is a time of great optimism. The seed you planted into a pot about a month ago is ready to become a huge plant. Its roots have been confined to a small pot and this has kept your plant small. Once its roots get a chance to spread out […]

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Gourd Tips

How To Plant Gourd Seeds

How To Plant Gourd Seeds A few weeks before the last frost of the year is the best time to begin starting your gourd seeds inside your home or greenhouse. It takes a gourd seed about a week to germinate and then about two-three weeks to mature enough that it can be transplanted outside. This […]

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Behind The Scenes

Introducing Our Washing Captain Candace

It’s time to introduce one of the lovely ladies that work in the production team here at Meadowbrooke. The newly crowned captain of the washing department, Candace “Hank” Varner, began her career at Meadowbrooke Gourds many years ago, fifteen to be exact, working on the farm crew. Happenstance gave her the connection to Ben Bear […]

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Gourd Tips

Gourd Farming Lesson #1: Choosing the Seeds

Hi, my name is Ben and I am the master gourd farmer for Meadowbrooke Gourds. I have spent the last twenty-five years of learning how to grow hard-shelled gourds. It has been a fun journey of a thousand mistakes and just as many successes. I’m not usually a slow learner, but mastering the growing of […]

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All About Gourds

Spring Fling Event

There was an unmistakable feeling of delight in the air this morning as I wondered around the newly renovated space at Meadowbrooke Gourds. The warm hum building as people began to settle in to create their own bunnies, baskets, or eggs, precariously balancing paints and gourds in hand as they found a seat. Young and […]

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Meet Our Staff

Get to Know our Expert Shipper, Nathan

It may seem at this point that everyone at Meadowbrooke has been here since their infancy, and yes, Nathan “Gustavo” Bear is no exception. He was literally born into the world of Meadowbrooke Gourds by having the good fortune of being Ben and Denise’s second child. From the age of three, Nathan went to “work” […]

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Gourd Tips

Our New Gourd Birdhouses and Tips to Help Them Last

Since the beginning of Meadowbrooke Gourds, we have been crafting birdhouse gourds. Over the course of many years, we have tried many different finishes. In the past, we used alcohol-based leather dyes (which fade), transparent paint (which peels), and now an oil-based dye and polyurethane coat. During the spring of 2014, we noticed we were […]

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Behind The Scenes

Crafting your own Gourd with Us

Well, here we go again, breaking something that is working well and bringing smiles to many of our customers. Why would we do this? It’s simple; really, we can do even better if we rebuild it from the bottom up. So what is the big problem? Our Create Your Own Events are full, customers are […]

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Behind The Scenes

Wednesday’s Company Meeting

Every Wednesday morning we have a company meeting where everyone from all over the company gets together to talk about what happened during the last week and where we are as a company. Josh’s mom cooks us breakfast and we all sit down and eat some delicious food while we are having our meeting. One […]

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Meet Our Staff

The Vivacious Dori Heller

​It’s now time to introduce one of the lovely ladies who works here at Meadowbrooke, and a no better place to start would be with the vivacious Doreen Heller. Dori has been with Meadowbrooke since the very beginning, even more so, if you consider she is the sister of Denise Bear. She began doing the […]

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Behind The Scenes

Our Wholesale Sales

​Most people do not realize that the largest part of our business is wholesale sales, or perhaps better put, selling gourds to other stores all around the country. You can find our gourds in every state except for Hawaii. We even have a store locator set up on our website for you to search for […]

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Behind The Scenes

A Season for Rest and Thanks

This time of the year on the farm is a very peaceful time. The gourds are all grown, cut from their vine and lying in the field in long rows slowly drying. There isn’t much to do on the farm except cut a little firewood to keep our home cozy and warm. All that can […]

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All About Gourds

Choosing new designs

Making the decision on what products to carry for the next year can be a daunting task. Every year this is a huge undertaking that some of us here at Meadowbrooke Gourds go through. It is a task we do not take lightly but we always have fun picking and choosing from some very interesting […]

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All About Gourds

Twenty Years and Still Smiling!

Wow! Twenty years have passed since we put this business together. In some ways, it feels like we have been crafting gourds forever. At other times, it all seems to have happened so fast. I’m still amazed that the seeds from two gourds found by accident turned into a dream that has lasted twenty years. […]

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All About Gourds

Our New Create Your Own Craft Kits

Over a year ago we set out to bring the experience of crafting your own unique gourd creations to people in their own homes. Our create your own classes and events at Meadowbrooke have been very popular and we really wanted to expand upon that and make crafting gourds more accessible to more people. There […]

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All About Gourds

Common Questions and Their Answers

Since folks are naturally intrigued by gourds and interested in our unique business, each day we are asked many questions. In this article, we have answered the most commonly asked questions. How do I remove a base that is stuck? Turn your gourd over and find the sanded notch where the cord is. Place a […]

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Behind The Scenes

Thanksgiving; a time to reflect

It is almost Thanksgiving and it is at this time of the year I like to sit back and reflect over the last year. It is the time to remember all the things I am thankful for and all the people that have come into my life and some that have left. Here at Meadowbrooke […]

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Meet Our Staff

Meet Kenny, Our Multi-talented Finisher

Kenneth “Jolio” Kerstetter the III was born in a strawberry patch, or so the story goes. Well, perhaps that is a bit of an embellishment, but Kenny has been around a very long time, his career with Meadowbrooke starting almost twenty years ago. Kenny started working for Ben at the tender age of twelve picking […]

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Behind The Scenes

Special Events at Our Gourd Farm

Each year we host several different events at our farm in Carlisle, PA. We actually have many customers request the dates of our events so they can “save the date” for a special outing to Meadowbrooke. Long before each event much thought, time and effort is put into every aspect. While you may see some […]

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