Ti­tanic turnips

Shepparton News - Country News - - OPINION -

Farmer Roger Bignell might just have the green­est thumb around af­ter dis­cov­er­ing he had the world’s largest turnips grow­ing in his back pad­dock.

Mr Bignell, from Water­house in Tas­ma­nia’s north-east, said he dis­cov­ered the aptly named Mam­moth Pur­ple Top turnips last week when he went to spray his pad­dock with Roundup.

‘‘They were hid­den amongst the weeds and large enough to top­ple the trac­tor,’’ he said.

The largest turnip weighed 18.36 kg, knock­ing the cur­rent Guin­ness Book of World Records ti­tle holder of 17.7 kg, from the United States, off the top spot.

‘‘I was quite sur­prised. It was in last year’s turnip crop for the cows that we hadn’t touched, ob­vi­ously a few seeds had ger­mi­nated,’’ he said.

‘‘Nor­mally they would just die off be­cause they don’t re­ceive any fer­tiliser or care, so it was quite an odd sur­prise to find turnips that size.’’

The mixed stock farmer said he sus­pected they had been grow­ing among the weeds since Jan­uary.

Con­sid­er­ing their size, Mr Bignell en­tered the largest one into The Guin­ness Book of Records and had it of­fi­cially weighed.

The best part of this story is that these enor­mous turnips were not Mr Bignell’s first veg­etable to make The Guin­ness Book of World Records. When he was 16, he grew the world’s largest car­rot weigh­ing 3.45 kg.

‘‘They were both un­in­ten­tional records,’’ he said.

‘‘I grew the big­gest car­rot when I was 16 and now I’m 61 and have grown the largest turnip in the world. It’s a bit of laugh.’’

The Bignell fam­ily will of­fi­cially re­ceive its recog­nised achieve­ment in com­ing weeks, and in the mean­time it will be busily look­ing for turnip recipes.

How­ever, it’s prob­a­bly more likely they will be fed to the cows. North-Eastern Ad­ver­tiser

Big is beau­ti­ful . . . North-east Tas­ma­nian farmer Roger Bignell and grand­sons Con­nor and Dy­lan Jones pic­tured with the three largest turnips he found on his prop­erty. The heaviest one (on the ta­ble) weighed 18.36 kg and is now the largest in the world.

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