Pumpkin patch success for East Lothian pals in time for Hallowe'en

A pair of students have grown 3,000 pumpkins - after planting the seeds when they were bored during lockdown.
Alex and David in their pumpkin 'patch'Alex and David in their pumpkin 'patch'
Alex and David in their pumpkin 'patch'

Pals David Grant-Suttie, 21, and Alex Humphreys, 22, have grown a variety including Pot of Gold, Atlantic Giant, Goosebumps and Jack O'Lantern.

The pair decided to plant 1,000 seeds back in March which has produced a crop of 3,000 pumpkins - as each seed can produce two to three pumpkins.

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They planted the seeds at David's family farm on Balgone Estate in North Berwick, and will welcome Halloween revellers to hand pick them today (Fri).

Pumpkins are all ready for Hallowe'enPumpkins are all ready for Hallowe'en
Pumpkins are all ready for Hallowe'en

Alex, a fourth year business and entrepreneurship student at Edinburgh Napier University, said: "Lockdown helped us as well and I stayed with David.

"We were working on the farm but we wanted to get stuck into something else with the time lockdown gave us.

"I've always lived in the countryside but my family didn't farm the land.

"It's been nice for the both of us and we've kept so busy.

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"It's been six months since we started it and haven't really had a day off.

"David and I are still at uni so we're trying to do that as well as do this.

"It'll be a great laugh for kids and families.

"I'm just excited."

Last year the lads planted 300 seeds as an experiment, but when lockdown came into force, they decided to make it into a business.

Economics student David said: "Last year was more of a guideline so we could have some assurance we could do the pick your own pumpkin.

"This year we planted thousands of seeds.

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"It's been a steep learning curve but the pumpkins have turned out well.

"Last year we planted about 300 seeds of all different varieties and took notes of which ones grow best.

"That was more experimental but this year we've scaled it up and planted more than 1,000 seeds and we've got about 3,000 pumpkins."

David's family's farm is a mixture of arable and livestock, with wheat, barley and rotation crops grown, and also a herd of Aberdeen Angus cattle.

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He added: "It was more nervousness at the start but we've planned well with not too many hiccups - it'll be fun adventuring into the unknown.

"Hopefully we make a good impression."

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