White spots in the pumpkin patch.
A fungus rising from the ground is attacking fields of pumpkins in the eastern third of the country.
The fungus, known as Michrodocium blight, strikes when the weather is cool and wet. It first attacks the gourd's stems and leaves, making the stems brittle. It then covers the pumpkins with a scabby surface of white and tan spots.
Dry weather in some states also has shrunk the size of some pumpkins, which has led to higher prices.