Pioneer Trail Orchard and Pumpkin Patch

21534 Chestnut Road
Council Bluffs, IA 51503


About Us

We bought our 30-acre farm in 1994 after an extensive search around the Council Bluffs area. We then moved from our small acreage just east of Treynor Iowa into the old farmhouse built in 1890, which we now use as the haunted house. It was quite the change going from a newer ranch home to 750 square foot old farmhouse with tilting floors, breezy walls and the occasional spider.

But, we had a dream. Our dream was to plant an apple orchard and build a new home towards the back of the farm. 1995 was the big year, we planted over 350 apple trees with a hand power auger and begun the construction of our new home. We also planted our first pumpkin crop towards the front of the farm and begun our first year selling pumpkins as Pioneer Trail Orchard and Pumpkin Patch. Our dreams were great, but all of our efforts have seemed like an uphill challenge, but we've continued to hold on to our dream.

With hard work and dedication, Jan and I continued to work our full time jobs as well as operate our farm and build our new home. Unlike some, we really did build our own home. Our only contract help was with the footings, cinder block and some drywall. We have done everything else on our own with some help from my brother Larry and brother-in-law Kent Sievers and only as we had enough money to buy materials. Initially we tried to get a loan to have the home built, but the bank said because we owned more than 10 acres, they needed us to place 50% down which was beyond our ability. As of August 2009 the home is complete short of some trim work and paint. It’s been quite the journey and I'm not sure I would tackle such a big project again, but we are proud of our accomplishment

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