The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

October 9, 2013

Ashtabula pumpkin grows in a tree

By SHELLEY TERRY - sterry@starbeacon.com
Star Beacon

ASHTABULA — A Lakeside High School student says to his mother, “There’s a pumpkin growing in our crab apple tree.”

The mother says, “Whatever.”

Her son persists.

“OK, show me this pumpkin,” said his mother, Deborah Williams, who later conceded that she didn’t really expect to see a big pumpkin in her tree.

But when she looked up, Williams saw the large, round, orange pumpkin firmly wedged in-between the branches, high up in the crab apple tree in her backyard.

“I went and got my cell phone and took pictures,” she said. “I couldn’t believe it.”

She called her friends, who said, “You have to call the Star Beacon!”

Her son, 14-year-old Randy, now has the satisfaction of finding The Great Pumpkin for Halloween.

“It’s shocking and weird how it can grow up in a tree,” he said. “It’s especially weird how it found just the right spot so it has support.”

Williams has heard of pumpkins growing in odd places, such as in a forest, hanging out near and under trees, but this surprised her. She’s pondered how this happened and she believes she has it figured out.

“Last year, after Halloween, we threw away two pumpkins in our compost bin,” she said. “This summer, a vine started to grow out of the plastic compost bin ... it became loaded with pumpkin flowers.”

The vines stretched along the backyard, the fence, over the fence and the one vine grew up into the tree.

“Nothing like this has happened in the seven years we have lived here,” Williams said. “We will have to decorate the front porch for Halloween.”