Ed Pugh is at it again.
Madras’ giant pumpkin grower is back and there’s no sophomore slump. He makes his return with double the trouble.
Central Oregon Daily News met him last year after he won second place at the West Coast Giant Pumpkin Regatta — as a rookie — with his pumpkin weighing over 1,200 pounds.
“You kind of have to pick between beauty, you know, color and shape and size, so I tried to do both,” he said, explaining the decision to grow multiple pumpkins.
He also tried to grow two last year, but lost one early in the season due to what he calls “a rookie mistake.”
This year’s pair, like babies, are fit with unique names and personalities.
“The pretty orange one we call ‘Thor Jr.’ because last year’s pumpkin, we called ‘Thor,’” he said. “And Kisamore, from the Midwest, is from a 2,003-pound pumpkin. Got really good genetics.”
He returns to the scale Saturday in Tualatin.
“I’m estimating they’re both around 1,200 pounds,” he said. “But I could be off either way 100 pounds.”
There’s an award for the heaviest pumpkin and the best-looking pumpkin. The latter, he says, is right in Thor Jr.’s wheelhouse.
“He’s got a chance at that,” Pugh said. “There will be some other pretty ones there, too, but they’ll give out a nice plaque. I think he’s got a shot.”
It’s hard not to think about how you stack up, especially with the work Pugh has put in throughout the year. But the hobbyist says this year isn’t about taking the top spot.
“I’m hoping one of them makes the top five, but I really have no idea,” he said. “The thing about it is, all these guys and gals that are competing, it’s not like a cutthroat competition. It’s more of a camaraderie-type situation.”
He says other competitors are happy to share inside secrets and tips to growing a better pumpkin.
The most important thing to Pugh is connections and knowledge, stored for future seasons, to continue cultivating his giant pumpkin dynasty.
“We’ll see what happens. I’m already looking forward to next year,” he said.
Do you know the weight of Kisamore?
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