McCraine Law October 2017

October 2017

The George McCranie Law Firm

301 E. Jackson St., Douglas, GA 31533 • 912-383-7581 • 1400 Baytree Rd., Valdosta, GA 31602 • 229-232-4114

George F. McCranie, IV Best-Selling Author

www.McCranieLawFirm.com

HOWFARMERS GROWTHOSE

Giant Pumpkins

Forklifts and cranes may be used mainly for construction work, but every fall, thousands of backyard gardeners use them as gardening tools — or rather, harvesting tools — for their largest single crop. Madge has been pestering me about growing some giant pumpkins for the last couple years. Could this be the big year? After you see how big these things really get, I think you’ll understand why I’m not up for it just yet. Massive pumpkins aren’t practical, but they can become a minor tourist attraction in your hometown and even win a few thousand bucks if they’re really huge. However, with the time and effort it takes to get them that big, farmers aren’t in it for the money. They’re in it for the glory.

like breeding a racehorse. It takes practice, cultivation, and even good genes. Competitive growers will often purchase the seeds of the previous year’s champions for their plant. After preparing the soil to make it extra fertile, they’ll plant the pumpkin in late winter or early spring. Before the gourd starts growing, flowers on the plant need to be pollinated. Farmers will usually take it upon themselves to pollinate, using pollen from plants with proven genetic lines. Winning pumpkins usually claim their “father” plant and “mother” seed, like racehorses. Growing a great pumpkin is practically a full-time job, with some farmers reporting spending 40 hours a week on it. Using heated soil, installing fences to reduce wind, adding sand to the patch,

and other specific cultivation techniques give the pumpkin a fighting chance to grow into a monster. But, in the end, there’s an element of luck. The competitive growing industry is getting bigger (pun intended). In 1979, the largest pumpkin on record was 438 pounds. Since 2008, the world record has been broken every year. The reigning heavyweight champion, grown in Germany last year, weighed in at 2,623 pounds. That’s as much as a 2018 Toyota Yaris or 1,748 standard pumpkin pies. So, I don’t think I’m up for getting into the competitive giant pumpkin growing with Madge just yet. But anyone who knows Madge will tell you, she usually gets what she’s after — just give her time to talk her daddy into it! –George

Growing these monstrous fruits (yes, they are technically fruits) is kind of

www.McCranieLawFirm.com | 1

Published by The Newsletter Pro . www.NewsletterPro.com

Made with FlippingBook - Online catalogs