Saturday, September 27, 2008

755 Pound Pumpkin!

The pumpkin went heavy and we ended up with a 755 pound pumpkin. I was thrilled. I didn't expect it to go heavy and was slightly suprised with the outcome. I exceeded all my pre-season goals by hundreds of pounds and also won 2nd place for the prettiest pumpkin (the Howard Dill Award). The event was a lot of fun with great crowds and great weather. Haddie's pumpkin took 3rd in the Junior division so we are very proud of her too.  I'd like to thank everyone who helped me with growing this year and I'm looking forward to next year.

24 Hours in the Life of a Pumpkin:

Monday, September 22, 2008

Come to the Denver Pumpkin Weigh-off at Jared's Nursery!

Welcome to Fall! This will be last post until the weigh-off. It has been a great growing season, a lot of hard work, and a lot of fun. I'm very satisified with my pumpkin. Growers from across Colorado will be participating in the 3rd Annual Rocky Mountain Giant Vegetable Growers weigh-off on Saturday, September 27th. The event will take place at Jared's Nursery in Littleton, 10500 W. Bowles Avenue, starting at 11 a.m. Admission is free to the public. It is a great event with food, audience voting and of course, some really amazing pumpkins. We expect a new Colorado record pumpkin this year. The current Colorado record was set last year at an amazing 1,075 pounds. More information about the weigh-off can be found at See you Saturday and bring the kids!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

We Did It! 151 inch Pumpkin Circumference

A month ago I set a goal to get the pumpkin to a 151 inch circumference. I knew we would need everything to go right in order for it to happen and that the odds were against me. Today we reached that goal! The pumpkin hasn't grown an inch vertically in the last 7 days but it has kept growing wider. It has been a little scary because of the potential of a split but so far it has held together. Five more growing days until I cut the pumpkin from the vine. There is a slim but outside shot of hitting 800 pounds by weigh-off time. Growth has been slow lately so I'm thinking low to mid 700s for the final weight.

If anyone sees a picture of a large pumpkin with a 2-year-old standing next to it in the Denver Post would you please let me know. The Post is supposed to run a picture of my pumpkin in the paper but they only said that it would be at the end of the month without an exact date.

Guess the Pumpkin's Weight Contest

The Denver Post's is doing a contest this week around my pumpkin. If you guess the weight then you will win tickets to Elitch Garden's Fright Fest. The weight will be announced at the weigh-off at Jared's Nursery in Littleton. The weigh-off begins at 11:00am on Saturday and admission is free.

For the visitors of I'm going to give you a clue to the pumpkin's weight. The estimated weight right now, based on the charts, is between 710 and 810 pounds. The estimation charts on average are within 10% of the correct weight so there is a pretty good range that the pumpkin could be in. If I were to make a guess the pumpkin is probably going to be 728 pounds. My guess isn't any better than anyone elses at this point however. There is no way to tell how thick the meat is on the pumpkin, so until you get it on the scales you never know for sure. Good luck with your guess and come to the weigh-off on and say hi!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

A Special Thanks to My Pumpkin and Parents

I would like to thank my wife Amber, the only true pumpkin, for putting up with me this growing season. She is my inspiration and she has put up with a lot this year. I put in more time into this pumpkin than either of us anticipated at the beginning of the season. Some have called it obsession, others passion. Even though it took away from our time together I recognize the sacrifices and love that she has shown to me this year. At fathers day she gave me a trip to Topsfield's big pumpkin competition and Boston. I really appreciated that. I look forward to spending that time away with her!

I also want to thank my parents. They too put up with a lot this year by letting me grow the pumpkin on their property. More than one time I called them with a request to do something with the pumpkin. I think they started to enjoy it some as the season went on though. A big, big thanks to them!

Done with the Fertilizers Until the Weigh-off

I have 8 growing days left until the weigh-off. The pumpkin put on 20 pounds today but it is scaring me. A valley is forming across the top of the pumpkin. The kind of valley that splits sometimes happen in. Most of the pumpkin's growth over the last few days has been horizontal and not vertical which makes it even worse. Another local giant pumpkin grower had a pumpkin with a really deep valley and it split just this week. I'm reducing the amount of water I'm giving the plant and going to lay off the fertilizers from this point forward in the hopes of keeping it together. I am now down to 1.5 inches remaining to reach my circumference goal.

My Pumpkin is in the Newspaper Today

DillBoy the pumpkin, my son and I are in the newspaper today. On page 6V of the Arvada/Wheat Ridge edition of YourHub, the Denver Post and Rocky Mountain News' community editions that are inserted with the regular paper, you can see my pumpkin and information about the weigh-off at Jared's Nursery. If you aren't in the Arvada or Wheat Ridge areas you can also see the article online at

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Over 700 Pound Pumpkin!

We met a new mark today. Over 700 pounds now both on OTT and circumference measurements. Just 4 more inches now to reach my goal with 10 more growing days remaining. If the pumpkin can hold together we might just be able to reach 800 pounds in estimated weight.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Coming Up On My Pumpkin Weight Goal

We are now down to 6 inches remaining to reach my goal of 151 inch circumference. Slow growth the last couple of days, but with today's warmth we put on 19 pounds today. There are now 13 days remaining until the weigh-off. If I keep pace with the typical 3/4 inch a day growth that the pumpkin has been doing in September, I should exceed my goal. With good weather in the forecast this next week things are looking positive right now.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Rain, Rain Go Away

I wasn't thinking very clearly yesterday when I added fertilizer. I thought the report was for only 1/2 inch of rain from this storm but there was an inch at the house this morning and it is supposed to come down all day. I really hope the pumpkin doesn't pop. Either it will gain a bunch of pounds in the next 3 days or the season will be over.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Who Has Been Messing with My Tape Measure?

I can't explain it, but my pumpkin appears to have put on 37 pounds in the last two days. The temperatures were cold today and were only mildly warm yesterday so growth typically would be really slow. I even took one inch off yesterdays measurement because I just knew it couldn't have grown two inches yesterday. Today's measurement confirmed it however. Another inch beyond yesterday's measurement. I'm guessing that the increased potash I've been giving the pumpkin has pushed it through some of this cold weather. Just hope that when the sun comes out tomorrow and we hit 80 degrees that we don't explode. Right now I have 18 days to grow 9 more inches to hit my goal.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

1,465 Visitors on!

Thanks to everyone for visiting! In the four months since I launched the site in May I have had 1,465 visitors. I hope you have learned something, not been to bored (after all what is more exciting than fertilizer) and started growing a bigger pumpkin as a result of this site. I always appreciate your feedback so if you ever have any questions or suggestions please feel free to leave a comment by clicking the link below. I will usually leave a reply to your comment in the same comment box within 24 hours.

Watch for pictures of my pumpkin on the Denver Post and Rocky Mountain News' this next week. will also be running a contest around my pumpkin starting September 22nd. Lastly, visit the big RMGVG weigh-off at Jared's Nursery to see my pumpkin and to see a new Colorado state record pumpkin (hopefully--we are counting on you Joe!). Admission is free to the public.

Pumpkin growth the last few days has been a bit slow. Right now I have 11 inches remaining to reach my goal.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Family Pumpkin Competition

Haddie has been talking some smack with grandpa lately. She says her pumpkin is bigger. My dad's pumpkin didn't get pollinated until the first week of August after a string of aborts earlier in the season. The last two weeks it has started to add some good pounds but it looks like Haddie (my 4-year-old) has got grandpa by about 20 pounds right now. The Arvada Festival of Scarecrows isn't until October 11th so it will be interesting to see if his Dill's Atlantic Giant can catch Haddie's Prize Winner by that time.

It will also be interesting to see if either of them can catch my pumpkin from last year. I think they both have a good shot. Haddie is growing from a seed from last year's pumpkin and it has gotten a little more TLC from her and better soil than my pumpkin had. If the weather will be kind they have a month still to grow so there is a lot of time to add some pounds. Right now they will need to add about 50 pounds to equal last years pumpkin.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Cold Weather Means Slow Growth

The cold weather of this week is slowing the pumpkin down a lot. Just one inch of growth over the last three days. Not much you can do at this point other than covering the pumpkin with blankets at night and wait for a warm sun to come back out. The forecast isn't looking bad but not great over the next 10 days in Denver. I find that this pumpkin doesn't typically grow much until it gets over 75 degrees for the daytime high. It doesn't look like it will get much warmer than that over the next ten days. Fall is in the air. Right now I am down to 12 inches from reaching my goal with exactly 3 weeks of growing left.

Monday, September 1, 2008