Two City of Kawartha Lakes farmers are basking with their record-setting pumpkin.
Phil and Jane Hunt earned national bragging rights with a 1,959-pound gourd which was entered at the Woodbridge Fair over the Thanksgiving weekend. The couple live in Cameron, just north of Lindsay.
“My wife and I are very excited about this new record,” Phil said.
A pumpkin recently grown in Calgary unofficially weighed 2,255 pounds, however, it was disqualified from competition because it had contained a hole.
The Hunts have been growing giant pumpkins since 1992. In 2009, they held the Canadian record at 1,678 pounds. Hunt is relishing his latest creation.
“On June 21, when I pollinated this pumpkin, it was the size of my thumbnail,” he said. “It’s just mesmerizing seeing something grow, you know, 45 pounds a day, for three weeks.”
The longtime pumpkin growing hobbyists say there are a few secrets to success besides good soil. The couple also grows giant tomatoes and beets.
“Mother Nature plays a big role in this but we had really good weather this year,” Hunt said. “The nighttime temperatures were great. We had terrific seed and lots and lots of water.”
As for the prize-winning pumpkin, it’s now on display in the front yard of their home along Highway 35.
“I’ll carve it out for Halloween,” Hunt said. “We’ll put a couple of very bright lights in there and shine it up for a couple of weeks. We encourage people to stop by, get their picture taken with it.”