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‘Tis our family’s season for giant pumpkin growing!

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Here’s a shameless plug for my husband: Austin Briggs from the Denver Post’s YourHub published an article about his giant pumpkin growing obsession.

And yes, I stand by my quote that there was not full disclosure before the marriage.

In the world of giant pumpkins, the difference between a record-breaking monster and a failed season can rest on something as trivial as a bug bite.

That’s one of many lessons Arvada resident and pumpkin obsessive Jamie Johnson, 43, has learned over the years as he guns for the state record.

This summer a squash bug nibbled on what he called “the prettiest pumpkin I’ve ever grown,” infecting the 453-pound, bright orange beauty with the assured death of yellow vine disease.

He had to cut “Bo” and a few other pumpkins off the vine prematurely, ending his 2014 season. He managed to salvage a 511-pound “baby.”

Last year, a personal record-breaker that topped 1,220 pounds split, disqualifying the gourd from competitions.

The official world record stands at 2,096 pounds; Johnson’s official best is


Last year's 1,200-lbs beast "Stanley"

Last year’s 1,200-lbs beast “Stanley”

Jamie with this year's pumpkin "Bo" before it succumbed to yellow vine disease

Jamie with this year’s pumpkin “Bo” before it succumbed to yellow vine disease

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  • comment avatar Monica October 13, 2014

    Bummer about his season but I saw the kids’ pumpkins at the Scarecrow festival…400 lbs? Impressive.

  • comment avatar Terry October 13, 2014

    How does one get seeds?

  • comment avatar Amber October 13, 2014

    Go to the Rocky Mountain Giant Vegetable Growers Group and they’re always happy to share seeds. Or ping me! They ask that you mail them a self-addressed stamped envelope with your mailing address to send the seed.