Lots of people take up hobbies when they conclude a career. For retired cabinetmaker Joe Jutras, his hobby has led to a trifecta of world records, all coming out of the garden, not the woodshop.
Jutras, 62, has been an avid gardener for decades, specializing in growing giant food. He already had two Guinness World Records, one from 2006 for the world’s longest gourd and another in 2007 for the world’s heaviest pumpkin. But Jutras made it a triple crown on October 7 when a giant squash from his Scituate, Rhode Island, garden tipped the scales at 2,118 pounds. That makes Jutras the only person in the world to hold three giant growing records (even though his two earlier records have since been surpassed).
Jutras told NPR that some of his skills from decades as a cabinetmaker come in handy in the garden, too. "You have to keep your eye on details," Jutras said. "It's the little things you do through the course of a year that make a difference. You can't take any shortcuts."
Jutras Woodworking is known for spectacular architectural millwork and yacht interiors. It won the 2012 Veneer Tech Craftsman’s Challenge award for architectural millwork for this project.
His cabinet company that he ran with his two brothers was definitely known for attention to detail, specializing not only in cabinets and architectural millwork, but also on the demanding area of cabinetry and millwork for yachts. In addition to other accolades, the company was a winner of a Veneer Tech Craftsman’s Challenge award in 2012.
Jutras gave extra special care to his prize-winning squash, which is technically classified as a fruit rather than a vegetable because it has seeds. He skipped vacations, did special soil preparation, and fed the plant with up to 150 gallons of water and 15 gallons of fertilizer a day. At night, he draped the behemoth with a blanket to keep it warm.
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