AGRICULTURE: Broccoli Kingdom

At the Indianapolis speedway 18 years ago, husky, young William Richards drove his racing car over the side of the track, smashed up, and was carried away with a broken pelvis. "When you're hurt and broke," Richards later related, "you naturally come home." Back he went to his native New England, looking for something less dangerous. Said Richards: "I stumbled into farming."

Last week, it looked as if Bill Richards, now 41, had stumbled into a gold mine. On Cape Cod, where he farms 300 once-scrubby, sand-swept acres by intensive irrigation, neighbors call him "the broccoli king." This summer, barring a...

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