Titanic turnips in Tassie

By Country News

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 18.36kg, knocking the current Guinness Book of World Records title holder of 17.7kg, 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 3.45kg.

‘‘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.

—Taylor Clyne

North-Eastern Advertiser