Towering feat for record grower
0:00am Fri Sep 19, 2008
Gardener Mr Alfred Cobb (92) with his world record-breaking cucumber, measuring just over three feet. - 150908MAT4-8
A 92-year-old gardener has broken his own world record for the longest cucumber for the third consecutive year.
Mr Alfred Cobb, of Holme, has set a new record with a cucumber measuring 36.1ins, which took him 11 months to grow. The previous record was 35.1ins.
The title was awarded to Mr Cobb at the National Amateur Gardening Show in Shepton Mallet.
Mr Cobb, a retired farmer, has been growing oversized vegetables for more than 25 years.
He cultivates his giant cucumbers in a greenhouse.
Mr Cobb gets up at 5am every day to water his vegetables and said it took a lot of care and attention to grow them to a champion size.
After he has exhibited his cucumbers he splits them open and removes the seeds to use the following year.
“It must be a good strain of seed for me to have won so many times,” he said.
His friend, Mr Peter Glazebrook (64) of Holme Lane, Halam, also set a new world record for the longest beetroot at the show.
Mr Glazebrook’s beetroot measured just over 21ft. The previous record was 20ft 2ins.
Mr Glazebrook, a former building surveyor, said: “I had held the record for the longest beetroot before in 2003 but it was beaten, so I am pleased to win the title back.”
Mr Glazebrook has been growing large vegetables for 20 years.
He grows his beetroot in drainpipes propped up against his garage and uses ordinary seeds from a garden centre.
“I plant the beetroot at the top and then the root grows down. You never know what you are going to get until you take it out,” he said.
Mr Glazebrook, who is a member of the National Vegetable Society, also won the heaviest onion section at the Harrogate Autumn Show. His onion weighed in at 14lb 11oz.
“I last won the heaviest onion title in 1991, so it’s taken me 17 years to win it back,” he said.
Mr Cobb and Mr Glazebrook feature in a book called The Biggest Beetroot In The World: Giant Vegetables And The People Who Grow Them, by Mr Michael Leapman.