BENSON – Jim Seamons might be the king of giant pumpkins in Cache Valley. His farm, located at 2151 W. 5400 N. in Benson, grows both the most different kinds and the largest pumpkins in Benson.
As a member of Cache Valley Giant Pumpkins and Utah Giant Pumpkin Growers, a state organization, he gets around to see what others are growing.
“When people need a giant pumpkin and I don’t have what they need, I know someone who does,” he said. “Last weekend I took a 600 pound pumpkin to the Arizona Giant Pumpkin Growers Association competition to see how one I grew would do.”
He took second place for his giant, but made valuable contacts for future sales and competitions.
“This was the first time I took pumpkins to the competition,” Seamons said. “I plan on going back.”
One his way down, he sold some big pumpkins to Stahle Farms and Dixie State University in the St. George area.
“It paid our gas for the trip and strengthened contacts for next year,” he said. “This year I grew around 70 pumpkins that weigh 300 pounds and I will sell all but 10 of those.”
The Utah State University Agriculture graduate is innovating his pumpkin crop, trying whatever he can to capitalize on the market.
This year he tried some molds he made that shaped the pumpkins to grow into Frankenstein and skeleton heads.
“I had 50 molds of each face made to see if they would sell”, Seamons said. “I sold everything I had.”
His love is growing giants. He continues to have success selling the large ones.
“I have 11 going to Pumpkin Night at the Utah State Fair Park in Salt Lake,” he said. “If I don’t have what they want, I have contacts to find what they want.”
He said Pumpkin Night draws about 65,000 people.
Seamons also offers the opportunity to pick your own pumpkins on four acres of the farm that has been in the family for generations. He has hundreds of different sizes, shapes and colors. He found the color orange is the most popular.
“I let people come and pick their own pumpkins,” Seamons said. “If they pick their own, it is less work for me and I can concentrate on other things.”
The larger pumpkins are under the covered tunnel that keeps them out of the weather. He said the late spring caused a little havoc with the pumpkin growers in Cache Valley.
“Then we had that early frost that was hard on them,” Seamons said. “2019 has been the most difficult growing year, yet has turned out one of the prettiest and best quality crops I have grown.”
In 2014, Seamons grew his first giant 615 pounder and attended his first weigh off.
“It was nerve-racking and out of my comfort zone. In 2015, I joined the half-ton club with a 1,016 pound pumpkin, and sold my first pumpkin to be carved.”
Things have changed in five years, as he got hooked on growing giants and grows bigger and better pumpkins than when he started.