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Subject:  Size of fruit for HD award

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Date Posted

JABC (Jordan)

Kelowna, British Columbia

Does the size of the pumpkins play any role in determining the HD award at a weigh off? Like if 2 fruits were the same color and shape but one weighed 800 lbs and another 1500 lbs, would the larger one be more favoured to win? Just something I've wondered for a while.

9/4/2018 5:19:39 AM


Anamosa, IA BPIowegian@aol.com

Depends on the individual site. They set their own rules on that. At Anamosa last year, there were no AG's worthy of the prize. It was just a few real ugly pumpkins, so they gave it to a field pumpkin. They gave it to a field pumpkin back in 2013 when they had a real nice shiny orange 535# AG. I never understood that one.

9/4/2018 10:03:50 AM

North Shore Boyz

Mill Bay, British Columbia

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder Jordan. It would be nice if there were a weight minimum (like 500 lbs) but each site has their own method of deciding beauty. It can be the most contentious award at the event, especially when there are 2 or 3 real good looking contenders. We rely on the judges and the growers to assist with the selection of the Howard Dill Award, that way it is a consensus and not open for debate between the contenders.

But to answer your question directly, if 2 pumpkins are so close in “beauty” then I personally would always give it to the larger pumpkin.

9/4/2018 10:54:22 AM


Oak Grove, Mn

I think too close to call between pumpkins for color and shape etc..size should become a consideration. It is much more difficult to keep hd qualities when a pumpkin starts to push 1000-1500 pounds. Shape is usually the first to suffer.

9/4/2018 11:50:04 AM

Glenoma Kins

Southwest WA

Is it a beauty contest or a size contest. I'm atill a little confused also but I agree with bnot its harder to achieve both.

9/4/2018 1:01:26 PM

Glenoma Kins

Southwest WA

*still a little confused also...

9/4/2018 1:02:07 PM

Farmer Brown (Chris Brown)

Nowthen, Minnesota

Easy 2 the same color and shape....bigger one for sure. The way to judge, I say either have the crowd vote or every other pumpkin entry that is not in the HD running, either way one vote, you hand out the slips and they( crowd or peers) write a number(4 entries) 1-4 into a box and 2 or more people open and total the votes.

9/5/2018 1:08:18 AM


Central Illinois

Illinois has a 500# minimum for the HD

9/5/2018 9:23:19 AM


Orient, Ohio

I don't agree with having a minimum weight restriction for HD contenders (but thats up to the site, their choice). That being said I know its much harder to grow a 1500+ lb pumpkin that meets the requirements for the HD award, so if choosing between a 500 lber and 1500 I would be more inclined to lean towards the larger especially if it held good shape, as bnot said that's the first that usually suffers. I also think color and natural skin condition and shine are important, some may be large have great shape but have a faded dull orange with a lot of cantelouping or skin cracking. Its very hard to please everyone on such a subjective award.

9/5/2018 9:59:18 AM

Orangeneck (Team HAMMER)

Eastern Pennsylvania

The larger one

9/5/2018 10:30:21 AM


There's no standard for pumpkins, like there is for showing dogs, livestock, ect. , so it's completely subjective...

9/5/2018 12:01:37 PM


It will always be debatable with no standard to measure against.

9/5/2018 12:03:39 PM


Bloomington, IN USA

Is the HD tournament still going to happen?
Wasn’t that going to be in Minnesota?
If so, you’re going to want to have some well-defined rules.
Many weighoffs the winner is almost a foregone conclusion, whereas with this it would probably be much more closely contested.

9/5/2018 1:19:12 PM


Oak Grove, Mn

The Stillwater showdown is going to happen. As far as I know the winner will be chosen by vote of the growers that are not in the hd championship. The only rule I know..to compete in the showdown..you must have won the HD award at a regular weighoff. You have an HD winner, bring it on in. Hoping to see a bunch of pretty ones.

9/5/2018 2:39:30 PM


Jericho Vermont

There is no correct answer Jordan and close to impossible to have a set of guidance as it is so subjective. I have grown for orange genetics for most of my growing career and think the Howard Dill award is the most overthought, contentious award at most weigh offs. I don’t think it was first thought of to be looked upon as a “competition” but as just a nice tribute given to a pretty pumpkin.

9/5/2018 3:57:36 PM

GPW (Crazy-Growers)


John ... well spoken

9/5/2018 5:23:46 PM

Engel's Great Pumpkins and Carvings

Menomonie, WI (mail@gr8pumpkin.net)

I have suggest for years a scale for HDA judging. With points given to the three key features. Color, Shape, Symmetry and additional points give for size
So color, symmetry, and shape have a 10 point scale for a possible of 30 points. This will involve opinion/perception and if needed a chart. Size has a 10 point scale also. This is based on actual weight. 2000 lbs would equal 10 points. While I don't agree with the points for size this is the only way we are going to get more growers to get involved. Anyone can grow a 200lb pretty pumpkin.

9/6/2018 1:08:17 PM

Engel's Great Pumpkins and Carvings

Menomonie, WI (mail@gr8pumpkin.net)

I also agree with what John has said. Yet have seen it go to a field pumpkin, a squash, and a down right ugly pumpkin. When there was a Beautiful Orange on at the weigh off.

9/6/2018 1:10:49 PM

Orangeneck (Team HAMMER)

Eastern Pennsylvania

The original post says both pumpkins orange with same color and shape. And I assume Jordan meant same skin texture as well. In that case there should be no debate, the larger one should win. For what justifiable reason would you pick the smaller of two otherwise identical looking pumpkins?

9/6/2018 11:03:28 PM


Love the idea about a point scale, Linus!
That would be a very fair way to decide it

9/7/2018 10:58:05 AM



I agree, all things identical, the larger pumpkin should win the HD award.

The point scale is a very interesting concept Shannon.

9/8/2018 1:05:50 AM

wile coyote

St. Paul, Minnesota

I think the judges regardless who they are, should follow Linus' point schedule for fair judging and have a ballot to turn in and show how they judged.

9/8/2018 12:00:55 PM


NE Arkansas

Shannon come down here to 105° daytime temps with a heat index of 115° and tell us how easy it is to grow a pumpkin.

9/21/2018 2:20:42 AM

Total Posts: 23 Current Server Time: 9/23/2019 9:08:44 AM
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