Hobby grows and grows - right into one massive pumpkin

Jim Alderson poses with his 1059.5 pound pumpkin that he grew this year. Mr. Alderson won second place at a giant pumpkin contest in western Washington on October 3.

One man recently squashed the competition at a western Washington pumpkin growers competition.

Jim Alderson took the fruit of his labor to the Kristoferson Farm Harvest Festival on October 3, and won second place in the pumpkin contest.

Mr. Alderson said that the pumpkin came in weighing 1,059.5 pounds.

“It was fun to be able to finally find out how much the pumpkin actually weighed,” Mr. Aldeson said. “I will probably do it again next year, this was a lot of fun.”

He said that this was the third year that he has attempted to grow giant pumpkins in his garden. He said that he started to take interest when he received a batch of pumpkin seeds that would bear 100 lb. pumpkins.

“I started out growing some of the 100 lb pumpkins,” Mr. Alderson said. “I took one of them to the Benewah County Fair and got a blue ribbon a couple years ago.”

“I had gotten out of it for awhile until I went over to pick up chickens from a guy in Deary who was growing the really big ones and that peaked my interest to try and grow the larger ones,” Mr. Alderson said.

Mr. Alderson said that in the last three years he has seen the weights jump exponentially. He started with a 252 lb. pumpkin, jumped to a 700 lb. pumpkin, and finished this year with his second place winner.

Mr. Alderson has grown not only large pumpkins, but also a local fan base of his efforts. Neighbors and other community members have made stops by Mr. Alderson’s house to check on the progress of his pumpkins and chat with him regarding his hobby.

He said that he is even a part of a local pumpkin growers club called the Pacific Northwest Giant Pumpkin Growers Club.

Mr. Alderson said that others have taken interest in growing giant pumpkins of their own. He has given out a few starts to locals and one of the starts displayed in Beulah Johnston’s yard, who was featured in an October 2019 issue of the Gazette Record.

He said that he was not able to bring the pumpkin back home as winners at the fall festival get to be displayed there throughout October.

“I want to thank the people over at Triple X Feeds, they have been really helpful,” Mr. Alderson said. “I was going to display my pumpkin there if it hadn’t of won. A lot of people think that it is pretty interesting and is a good conversation piece.”

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