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Following a Utah man's journey to grow the heaviest pumpkin he can

Posted at 9:53 PM, Nov 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-24 09:14:18-05

SALT LAKE CITY — We’ve all seen giant pumpkins, but the story of how one attempts to grow a pumpkin as big as the ones you’ve seen on TV is no less incredible.

FOX 13 photojournalist Thor Fiedler and reporter Spencer Joseph followed Clint Nash on his journey from April to September to grow one of Utah’s biggest pumpkins.

The science and the theories behind the “how” are plentiful, but it breaks down to this: You want your pumpkin to “go heavy,” or weigh more than its size is expected to.

At times, Nash's pumpkin, which started from a seed, can grow 30 pounds a day!

Nash has researched and researched to find the best seeds to grow. This year, he chose a seed from the heaviest pumpkin that has ever grown in the state of Alaska.

Through the journey, Nash had nights where he felt like saying, “That's it, I am pulling the plant. It only grew 18 pounds.”

Nash has been growing giant pumpkins since 2013. He found the first one at a garden store — it grew about 100 pounds and ended up being the greeter at his wedding.

But other years, his pumpkins have had problems that disqualified them from being “official” at the weigh-off. Last year, it was discovered the day before the weigh-off that his pumpkin had a hole in the bottom.

To see how his efforts (93 days of growing and thousands of hours of care) paid off, watch the video above.

Despite all the time and work it takes, Nash says it's such a labor of love.

"I don’t know that I will ever quit doing this!” he said.

So, what do you do with a giant pumpkin (other than making the world's largest pumpkin pie)?

Well, you race it, of course! Nash competed in the annual pumpkin regatta, sailing it against others. He won the relay race and the "best in show" award.

Now that it's over, he's already planning ahead for next year's giant pumpkin!