Ely Man Grows Pumpkin Estimated at 1,200 Pounds

By KBJR News 1

September 28, 2012 Updated Sep 28, 2012 at 7:05 PM CDT

Ely, MN (Northland's NewsCenter) - An Ely Man with a green thumb has grown a pumpkin estimated to weigh in at 1,200 pounds.

Dan MacCoy has been pursuing his hobby of giant pumpkin growing for over two years. This year, he's grown his biggest pumpkin yet.

"Right now it's estimating around 1,200 pounds," said MacCoy of the pumpkin, which at the peak of its growth grew 30 pounds a day.

MacCoy says his interest in the hobby blossomed when he saw a pack of pumpkin seeds at a local store, claiming to produce pumpkins up to 100 pounds.

"I threw down a bag of Miracle Grow on the grass... and I grew a 40-pounder and that's what really got me started," said MacCoy of his first pumpkin growing experience, "I was impressed with that 40-pounder."

Multiply the awe of that 40-pounder 30 times and you'll get MacCoy's newest endeavor.

"The seed had a lot to do with it," said MacCoy of his giant pumpkin, "But you still have to trim the vine and prune it."

Dan found help from the website BigPumpkins.com, an online forum for the world of giant pumpkin growing.

"It's an awesome place to go to learn," said MacCoy of the website.

MacCoy's giant pumpkin growing world will grow a little bigger this weekend as he enters his pumpkin into a pumpkin growing weigh-off in Delano.

"[People] come from all over southern Minnesota, South Dakota, we had a guy from South Dakota last year," said MacCoy of the competition.

First place in the weigh-off will get about $300, but the number MacCoy has his eye on has nothing to do with dollar signs.

"Seeing that number pop up, and hopefully it's a big number, that's the rewarding part of it," said MacCoy, "If I get [into the] top three I'll be happy."

MacCoy plans to bring his massive pumpkin the more than four-hour drive to Delano via trailer. He says he'll use a forklift and harness system to get the pumpkin from his greenhouse onto the trailer.

As for what will happen to the pumpkin after the competition, MacCoy says he's not sure, but that the giant pumpkin isn't the best kind for pies.

Written for the web by Jennifer Austin.