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Pumpkin grower mocked by his mother has the last laugh after he grows 900 pound whopper

The i logo The i 10/10/2018 Sally Guyoncourt
© Provided by Johnston Publishing Ltd

What do you do when your mum mocks your attempts to grow a prize-winning pumpkin?

Come back fighting with a super-sized squash with record-breaking credentials.

Richard Le Sueur made it his mission to grow the biggest pumpkin ever after his 93-year-old mother derided his first attempt.

His pumpkin entry at the Royal Jersey Agricultural and Horticultural Society Autumn show in 2011 tipped the scales at 165 lbs.

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But his mum Elaine Le Sueur branded it "pathetic" after it was dwarfed by a competitor's 500 lbs pumpkin.

Retired builder Mr Le Sueur said: "I happened to grow one that was 165 lbs and I thought it was quite good so I put it in the show and went on holiday.

" a truck is parked in front of a brick building © Provided by Johnston Publishing Ltd When I came back my mum said it was pathetic, the local record was 500 lbs that year.

"It was like a red rag to a bull."

Has he done his mum proud this year?

After seven years of perfecting the art of pumpkin growing, Mr Le Sueur took this year's creation to the show in the Channel Islands on a forklift truck.

And the gargantuan gourd, which weighed in at 979 lbs and was the size of a kitchen table, smashed all previous pumpkin records in Jersey.

a group of people standing in a room: Richard Le Sueur and his two grandsons with the prize-winning pumpkin © Provided by Johnston Publishing Ltd Richard Le Sueur and his two grandsons with the prize-winning pumpkin It weighed well in excess of the previous record of 551 lbs, set by Paul and Jake Perchard in 2011.

And even his back-up pumpkin from the same patch was a record-breaker with a weight of 600 lbs.

What is the secret to squash success?

Persistence seems to be the key to prize-winning pumpkins.

The 66-year-old said: "I kept growing and learning every year, and this year the weather was perfect.

"It was growing at 28 lbs a day, it was growing night and day during the time when you couldn't sleep under your sheets.

© Provided by Johnston Publishing Ltd "Last year I used too much fertiliser and they just imploded - you've got to get the right amount."

"It's all about getting a good seed to start with, it's the genetics basically.

"You need to water it all the time and provide a bit of fertiliser - I had seaweed sat on the soil, about six inches."

Mr Le Sueur used an American special seed to grow his giant fruit.

Is the future orange for Mr Le Sueur?

The keen cultivator has his sights set on smashing the 1,000 lbs barrier next year.

In pictures: Autumn's weirdly coloured vegetables [Deutsche Welle]

He said: "The 1,000 lbs mark has to be beaten now."

As for this year's prize-winning produce, it may be about to become a pumpkin on public display.


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