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What a whopper! Geoff sets the standard for pumpkin contest

MIGHTY MELON: Geoff Frohloff with his huge pumpkin.
MIGHTY MELON: Geoff Frohloff with his huge pumpkin. Rob Williams

THE old saying that it is what's inside that counts doesn't apply if you want to grow pumpkins the size of a baby elephant.

Atlantic Giant pumpkins are rubbish to eat - only fit for cattle - but when it comes to looks, they blow away the competition.

Minden farmer Geoff Frohloff has spent 23 years mastering the art of producing a specimen so big it takes either a forklift or the entire population of Prenzlau to lift into the back of a ute.

His best effort to date was a 300.5kg beast in 2003 but, since then, he has struggled to ward off gummy stem blight - a nasty little disease that has infected many of his pumpkins before they've had a chance to reach their potential.

Disease claimed many of this year's crop too - except for one huge, lumpy freak of nature he plans to enter into this weekend's Royal Queensland Show Giant Pumpkin Competition. Usually held at Ekka time, in August, the weigh-in was brought forward to May to coincide with picking time for growers.

In another first, the competition will be held at Ipswich's Riverlink Shopping Centre - in the car park outside Pillow Talk - this year.

The weigh-in will be conducted from early morning, with presentations beginning about 10.30am.The winners will be on display at the Ekka.

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