Dotting rural highways all around the world, the venerable vegetable stand is a method for farmers and gardeners to generate income and to increase the quality of food that folks eat.

Most operate on a cash basis. Whatever is ready to harvest is what appears on the stands. This week it may be large cucumbers making their debut, next it may be acorn squash. The veggies tend to be better tasting and higher quality than what you find in the supermarket. Sometimes they're bigger and have a weird shape so they wouldn't make it to the grocery store. Selling it at a roadside stand is an excellent way not to waste them.

Some farms or gardeners have a hothouse to supply their families with veggies over the winter. They typically either sell the surplus or donate it to the local food pantry. It's always surprising when you see the crazy prices the supermarkets charge for things like onions or tomatoes. This fall I purchased a tasty three pound red onion for less than half the cost of a a three pound bag of wimpy, tasteless ones at the grocers. 

So, next time you're zipping down a country road and see a stand, make sure you stop in and get something tasty. Just make sure the folks running the stand are not a creepy clown or a guy with a leather mask waving a chainsaw around.