Miss Amelia, the 2,005-pound pumpkin that was named after the 13-year-old girl who grew it, is now on display at Valley View Farms.
A giant pumpkin has been an annual fall feature at least since 1989, said Valley View Farms greenhouse manager Carrie Engel.
Each year the farm connects with growers through pumpkin weigh-ins and festivals to acquire their highly anticipated seasonal display.
Valley View currently has multiple giant pumpkins, weighing around 900 pounds each, but Miss Amelia is the top attraction.
“She’s by far the prettiest, orangest pumpkin we’ve ever had, in that size,” Engel said. “Usually they’re gray or blonde, so she’s really nice.”
According to greenhouse staff, growers place the plant into the ground in early June and they pick it in late September, so it grows at least 23 pounds a day. “Some use Miracle Grow, some use kelp, some use milk. They all have their own thing.”
“Must be steroids,” said farm visitor Elaine Butcher. “I’ve never seen anything like it. It’s absolutely unbelievable.”
On Oct. 29 the farm will cut open the pumpkin and WBAL Chief Meteorologist Tom Tasselmyer will count each seed. At that time, all the pumpkin seeds will be dried out and sent back to the grower for next year.
“We’ve found as few as one seed [in a previous year],” Engel said. “One viable seed, and that was hard to send back to the grower and say we’re sorry we just got one.”
Visitors have the opportunity to guess how many seeds are in Miss Amelia for prizes. The top three guesses will win a Valley View Farms gift card up to $300.
Contest entries can be submitted from now until the seed counting begins, Oct. 29 at noon.