Forget James and the giant peach, Minden’s Tony Frohloff and his 257kg pumpkin are the talk of the town after pipping his Dad at the post to win the iconic Royal Queensland Show (Ekka) Giant Pumpkin Competition sponsored by Pillow Talk at the Brisbane Showgrounds.
Tipping the scales at more than a quarter of a tonne, his super-sized pumpkin squashed fellow competitor and his Dad Geoff Frohloff’s three year reign as king of the veggie patch, to win the coveted Champion Heaviest Pumpkin of Show.
Geoff claimed second place with his 247kg whopper but still holds the 261.5kg Ekka record set in 2015 – Tony was only 4.5kg off breaking it this year – while Geoff was also awarded third place for his other ginormous gourd which weighed in at 246.5kg.
Tony Frohloff said even though his pumpkin didn’t smash the record, he’s thrilled with the win.
“It’s great to finally beat Dad and at least we’re keeping the title of pumpkin king in the family,” he said.
“There was only 10kg in it and the pumpkins actually have the same measurements, so we didn’t know until today who had won.”
The giant pumpkin pro has only been growing the oversized orange vegetables for three years and says the secret to his success this year was simply a lot of hard work.
“From fertilising to keeping the soil as loose as possible, it has taken more than four months to grow the pumpkin to this size.’’
Green thumbs certainly run in Tony’s family, with his son Riley winning first place in the Youth Class with his smashing 48.5kg entry.
RNA Chief Executive Brendan Christou said the giant pumpkin competition was one of the Ekka’s most iconic agricultural events, dating back to the very first show in 1876.
““The Ekka is all about celebrating and showcasing agriculture and this competition does exactly that – it rewards and recognises Queensland growers for producing the best of the best,” he said.
“I congratulate Tony on his terrific win and I’m also pleased to see the next generation of growers here today, who’ve spent months in the garden tending to their entries.”
Some of the giant pumpkins will roll into the Brisbane Showgrounds again in August, to be displayed in the Agricultural Hall at Ekka.
Those wanting to spread their seeds and attempt to grow a pumpkin for next year’s competition, can sign up for special Giant Atlantic Pumpkin seeds at the show.
The giant pumpkin competition signals the official countdown to Ekka, which is now just 90 days away.
2017 ROYAL QUEENSLAND SHOW – GIANT PUMPKIN COMPETITION RESULTS
Champion Heaviest Pumpkin of Show – Tony Frohloff – 257kg
Class 1 – Open:
1st Tony Frohloff – 257kg
2nd Geoff Frohloff – 247kg
3rd Geoff Frohloff – 246.5kg
Class 3 – Youth:
1st Riley Frohloff – 48.5kg
2nd Flynn Davis – 42kg
3rd Thomas Haag – 26kg