A small farm owner weeding his garden got a giant surprise when his hoe struck an object beneath the soil’s surface.
At first, Colin Craig-Brown thought it might be some strange fungal growth.
But after digging it out, scratching the skin’s surface and tasting it, he realised it was… a monster potato.
“We couldn’t believe it,” his wife, Donna, said. “It was just huge.”
The couple from Hamilton, New Zealand, believe the potato is self-sown and may have been growing for a couple of years or more.
They are waiting to find out if the spud, weighing 7.8kg (17.2lbs), has made it into the Guinness World Records book as the world’s heaviest potato.
The current record has been held since 2011 by a potato from Shepton Mallett, Somerset – which weighed a mere 4.98kg (10lb 14oz).
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Since deciding to call their mutant-looking vegetable Doug, it’s been enjoying a bit of celebrity status.
They have built a small cart to tow the ugly potato around town.
“We put a hat on him. We put him on Facebook, taking him for a walk, giving him some sunshine,” Mr Craig-Brown said.
“It’s all a bit of fun. It’s amazing what entertains people.”
But the monster find is proving difficult to look after, as it begins to dry out and get mouldy.
Mr Craig-Brown insists the potato has not had its chips yet – he’s left it in his fridge and plans to turn it into potato vodka.
He says he has no special tips for other gardeners who want to grow giant vegetables, other than to throw a load of cow manure and straw in the garden and see what happens.