Only Dave Chan could view a 1,676 lb. pumpkin as insufficiently gigantic.
It was more than enough to win the B.C. Giant Pumpkin Weigh-Off at Aldergrove’s Krause Berry Farm on Saturday, Oct. 8, and while Chan, the defending champion and B.C. record holder, was happy with the win, he said he’d been aiming to better his previous mark of 1,911 pounds (the largest ever seen in B.C.) by breaking 2,000.
“Earlier on this year, we had some pretty poor weather and I think that’s where I lost the poundage,” the Richmond resident told the Langley Advance Times following his win, his wife, Janet Love, at his side.
What is his secret for producing record-breaking pumpkins?
“My secret is elbow grease, sweat, time, more time, and patience from your wife,” Chan replied, smiling.
Chan said he may still have a shot at breaking the 2,000 mark.
“We still have a chance at home,” he said.
“There’s another pumpkin, that’s going to be weighted next week.”
Chan first became interested in the art of growing very big pumpkins about 40 years ago, when he saw a man who’d grown a giant pumpkin on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.
The man mentioned that the seed for his winner had come from a Canadian, a man in Nova Scotia named Howard Dill.
Chan took a chance and sent a letter addressed to “Howard Dill, Nova Scotia.”
One week later, a letter from Dill arrived with seeds.
Dill, well-known for growing giant pumpkin varieties, has been called the “pumpkin King” and “Father of all pumpkins.”
Trevor Halliday and his wife Joanne, from Maple Ridge had the second- and third-place pumpkins, weighing in at over 2800 pounds combined.
Trevor said his pumpkin was a late starter, planted after Joanne’s.
“We called this the dark horse, because we figured it would catch up,” Trevor recalled.
It was Joanne’s first competition.
Event organizer Jeff Pelletier was encouraged by the number of novices taking part.
Among the the 13 entrants, there were “a lot of first-time growers” Pelletier noted. “We had four, who [all] broke 1,000 lbs.”
More pictures from the day can be viewed online at the Langley Advance Times Facebook page.
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