Big whopping pumpkins

Mitre 10 Mega Ashburton operations manager Michelle Brown lounging among some of the pumpkins entered in the annual pumpkin growing competition.

The heaviest, biggest and weirdest pumpkins grown from Mitre 10 Mega Ashburton seedlings went under scrutiny last weekend.

They were of the Atlantic Giant variety so not destined for human consumption, but saw plenty of stock get a treat.

Youngster Maddy Cunningham won the heaviest pumpkin honour with her 73kg whopper.

Her sister, Chloe Cunningham, won the biggest in diameter.

And the weirdest was grown by Bronwyn Gilchrist.

There was also another category added for the prettiest grown, which was won by Lexus Shepherd.

Spokesperson Lisa Scammell said Mitre 10 Mega resurrected the pumpkin growing contests of many years ago, and brought it back as a “fun competition as so many families are getting into growing their own veges.”

Staff gave away 40 Atlantic Giant variety of pumpkin seedlings in November last year to growers of all ages, and feedback had been a mixed bag of success.

The variety was renowned for producing large pumpkins, but some growers had reported no luck to giant, to just plain weird, she said.