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Peter Glazebrook is 69 years old and has become a bit of a celebrity-figure amongst giant vegetable growers worldwide. If you like to grow… then you’d be sure to know… who this Jedi Knight of the vegetable world is. And if not, then here’s your introduction!
Recently he has managed to grow and unveil the world’s largest cauliflower weighing a colossal 27.485kg (60.54lb) and he’s a bit of a general expert in the secrets of growing things big in the UK.
It now means that he holds five world records for giant vegetables in total. His four existing records include the World’s longest Beetroot measuring 640cm (21.0ft), longest parsnip measuring 5.930 metres (19ft .45 in) Heaviest Onion 8.195kg (18lb 06ozs) and Potato 4.98kg (10.95lb)
At Guavo HQ we have supported more than one unveiling of a giant vegetable… and have learnt how widely spread the craze is (excuse the pun!) – growing… it’s become a worldwide connected hobby for many and when a new world record gets set, it becomes big news amongst the grower communities.
Two National Vegetable Society judges and five other observers went to the home of Mr Peter Glazebrook on Easter Monday this week for the trimming and weighing of his two giant specimens. A crop-related miracle if you like! Peter told us:
“The weighing was conducted at my home because there were no vegetable shows at this time of year. My previous effort in 2013 was weakened by the long cold snap that hit most of the UK and the exceptionally mild autumn this time has helped me to clinch this record breaker!”
The previous record of 24.6 kg (54 lb 3oz) was held by Alan Hattersley of Ecclesfield Village, Sheffield, UK and it has been held since the 6th August 1999.
Peter weighed two on Easter Monday, the first one was only 51.15lb (23.22Kg) but the larger plant weighed 60.54lb (27.485kg) beating the existing 1999 record of 54lb 3oz (24.6kg). The trimming and weighing was witnessed by two NVS judges and five other observers. The cauliflower foliage measured 6ft in diameter.
The Cauliflower variety is Darwin grown from plug plants started in July 2013, they were sent to Peter by a commercial grower in Cornwall during August. They were grown on in pots of John Inness no2 in the greenhouse, planting 3 of them into his small tunnel in large pots of John Inness no3 compost during Oct. They were kept frost free over the winter and early spring, including covering them with fleece every night and watering very frequently with firstly Calcium Nitrate, changing to a high Potash feed once they started to heart up about a month ago. The cauliflower was sprayed once a week with organic Shropshire seaweed.
They were shaded in the tunnel during recent clear sunny days. Peter had to guard against caterpillars in the autumn but otherwise no pests or disease problem.
Kevin Fortey, a good friend of Peter’s who is a hobbyist giant vegetable growing expert and runs his own online website and forum for fellow hobbyists around the UK told us:
“The vegetables take alot of time and dedication from the growers and are costly to produce.There’s not been a cauliflower grown this big since 1999. It’d probably feed the entire royal family. Peter’s wife, mary has been busy chopping up the cauli and freezing it.”
About the growing interest in the giant vegetable growing craze he said:
“There are several giant vegetable shows throughout the UK. The biggest being the UK giant vegetable championships at the malvern autumn show and at the end of september.last year this show attracted over 68 000 visitors.”
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PHOTO CREDIT: Peter Glazebrook / TIG