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Watton sunflowers are bloomin' marvellous

PUBLISHED: 09:20 28 August 2009 | UPDATED: 11:23 08 July 2010

WHILE most keen gardeners tend their plants on a daily basis to produce a prize crop it seem a good dose of pig muck and leaving flowers to fend for themselves can be just as effective.

WHILE most keen gardeners tend their plants on a daily basis to produce a prize crop it seem a good dose of pig muck and leaving flowers to fend for themselves can be just as effective.

A couple from Watton were surprised to find their sunflower seedlings had shot up into giants whilst they were enjoying a caravanning holiday in Cromer.

The pair, who live on Redhill Park returned from their trip to find the flowers in full bloom and at heights of up to 20ft outside their home.

Seeing the monsters towering above their fence was a pleasant surprise for Norman and Anita Gay who had never tested their green fingers at growing the plants before.

Mrs Gay, 62, said: “The sunflowers were only budding before we went.”

“But when we came back they were all out and such a picture.

“We just could not believe how big they were.”

The growth of what could be some of the tallest sunflowers in the county has only added to the stunning display outside Mr and Mrs Gay's home.

Last year they received recognition for their novelty garden when they won the Redhill Park Watton Garden Competition.

Then they blended their passion for antiques and planting to create a Chelsea flower show style display whose main feature was a Victorian single bed covered by duvet of Bizzie Lizzies.

This was accompanied by a chest of drawers over flowing with Petunias and fire places burning with multi-coloured flora.

When asked for the secret behind their flourishing plants Mr Gay, 67, had one answer, pigs muck.

Mr Gay said: “I did not use any chemicals or fertilizers when growing the sunflowers.”

“I just planted the seeds in a mixture of pigs muck and top soil, and then made sure they were watered once while we were away.”

“These conditions are also ideal for growing garden vegetables such as leeks and runner beans, or any garden flowers.”

After their surprising success the couple are already anticipating what they will be planting next season with a smaller batch of sunflowers planned alongside the ones they produced this year.

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