GOOD golly, Miss Molly!
A green-fingered South Tyneside girl stunned judges at a vegetable growing competition by beating scores of grandads to the top prize.
Nine-year-old Molly Smith, from West Boldon, took one giant leek for woman-kind to win five of 12 categories at this year’s Houghton Feast vegetable show.
The youngster has been growing vegetables for four years after gaining a keen interest in gardening through her 62-year-old grandfather, John.
Despite entering the competition in previous years, this is the first time she has won any awards.
In this year’s show, Molly won awards for the heaviest onion – which weighed in at an impressive 9lbs – the best collection of vegetables, and the most points in the vegetable section.
She also won first prize for the best blanche leeks and for the most points in the whole show.
Molly, who is deaf, was presented with five trophies for her efforts.
Her mum, Jo Gibson, 37, said: “It’s great. She loves growing them.
“She is profoundly deaf, so everything she knows she does by sight. She learns from watching people around her.
“Molly is a bit of a grandad’s girl. She goes to help him in the garden about three times a week. This is the first year she has won anything, so she is over the moon to have won so many awards.
“She has gone to celebrate with her grandad. I’m really proud of her.”
Molly’s grandmother, Cathy Smith, 60, said: “Nothing fazes her, she just gets on with it. She goes swimming, plays football and does cheerleading, she’s very active.
“She has been gardening with her grandad since she was tiny, and she has been going to Houghton Feast since she was a couple of weeks old.
“My husband idolises her. He has even bought her a boiler suit for the garden!”
Houghton Feast is an ancient 10-day festival held annually in Houghton-le-Spring, Sunderland.
The festival, which has been running since the 12th century, combines a unique mix of traditional and modern activities which bring together performances from community, voluntary and professionally staged events.
n Molly knows her onions ... Page 6