Pumpkin seed bought for £1,250 as horticulture firm aims big
Bosses at a horticulture firm hope to reap a rich harvest after spending £1,250 on a pumpkin seed.
Thompson & Morgan staff hope that the seed will produce the biggest pumpkin the world has seen.
They are now trying to find a UK gardener who can turn the seed into a record-breaking fruit.
A spokesman for the firm, based in Ipswich, Suffolk, said the seed was about two inches long and came from the biggest pumpkin seen so far - a 2,323 lb (1054 kg) specimen produced by a Swiss grower in 2014.
He said Thompson & Morgan horticultural director Paul Hansord had bought the seed at a specialist auction in Lymington, Hampshire - beating the previous record giant pumpkin seed price of £1,171.
Mr Hansord said a standard pack of 10 pumpkin seeds sold for as little as 99p - but he said the chance to buy a potential record-breaker did not come along often.
"The UK is home to some of the most passionate and dedicated pumpkin growers. Sadly none have been lucky enough to break the world record. To do that you need to start out with the best quality seed," he said.
"Our spend on the Swiss seed may seem a high price to pay, but it will boost the genetics of UK plants moving forward and give us the best chance of seeing the world title brought to the UK for the first time."
He added: "Getting hold of this seed is the equivalent of buying Red Rum for stud use!"
The firm says gardeners interested in nurturing the seed should contact Thompson & Morgan and state their case.