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Giant pumpkins aim for world record

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'Baby' pumpkin and champion grower Ian Paton
'Baby' pumpkin and champion grower Ian Paton. Picture; Thompson & Morgan

Massive ‘babies’ put on 60lb a day!

Champion pumpkin growing twins Ian and Stuart Paton aren’t content to rest on their laurels for the 2017 giant veg season.

They have four pumpkin ‘babies’ which are piling on a massive 60lb a day in a bid to beat their record-breaking 160 stone pumpkin of last year at the Jubilee Sailing Trust Autumn Pumpkin Festival and Scarecrow Avenue in Southampton on Saturday, October 14.

For the first time, the pumpkins are being kept at a constant 18°C even during the night. This ploy seems to be working, as the pumpkins are 10 per cent ahead of last year’s winner with a circumference of 19ft.The water and electricity bills are going through the roof to keep the pumpkins hydrated and warm.

Bills through the roof

The water and electricity bills are going through the roof to keep the pumpkins hydrated and warm.

It’s a special year for Ian, as he has been made President of the Great Pumpkin Commonwealth, a world-renowned organisation.

Gigantomo tomato winner
Gigantomo tomato winner at Harrogate Autumn Flower Show 2016

The Patons, from Southampton, will need to hire a special, super-charged, truck to lift the enormous pumpkin, as their tractor will not be up to the job.

However, size isn’t everything, as one false move and the pumpkin skin can split, making it ineligible for the official weigh-in.

For the first time, the competition will also include the Tomato Gigantomo weigh-in, so if you have any, bring them along on October 14.

For more information, visit www.facebook.com/JSTPumpkinfest/.

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