Saturday, October 5th 2019, 10:25 am - Optimal weather conditions are critical to grow giant pumpkins.
Some pumpkins are carved into jack-o-lanterns, others are used to make pumpkin spice lattes, and few are destined to compete for the title of largest pumpkin.
Alex Noel from Connecticut recently broke the record for the heaviest pumpkin that weighed in at 2,294 pounds (1,040 kilograms) at the Topsfield Fair in Massachusetts.
"It's a dream come true. I'll sleep better tonight than I have in 18 years," says Noel.
Mike LaCrosse, a contest participant, says that the secret to growing a massive pumpkin is in the seeds, daily nurturing, fertilizing, and pruning.
Machines are used to move the monstrous pumpkin. Credit: CNN
Sufficient sunshine and rainfall are also necessary for the pumpkins to reach a large size and LaCrosse says that putting plywood underneath the pumpkin when it gets to the size of a basketball can help prevent it from rotting.
"Now if you get a lot of rain, then you're on plywood and it's much safer than if it's sitting in the dirt," says LaCrosse.
Pumpkins have been grown in North America for nearly 5,000 years and require a long growing season that generally features 75 to 100 frost-free days. Most pumpkin seeds are planted in late May and June in Canada and thrive in sites will full sunshine to light shade.
The world record for the heaviest pumpkin is 2,624 pounds (1,190 kilograms) which was grown in Belgium in 2016. Massive pumpkins can grow in Canada, and last October Phil and Jane Hunt presented a 1,959 pound (889 kilograms) pumpkin at the Woodbridge Fair.