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Gigantic 'Ube' unearthed in Tuba, Benguet

A farmer in Tuba, Benguet unearthed a 6-foot white 'ube' weighing 28 kilos.

Farmer Homer Menzi unearthed an enormous 6-foot 'ube' weighing 28 kilos in Tuba, Benguet. Nathaline Daniel, ABS-CBN News

An Igorot farmer in the town of Tuba, Benguet in the Cordilleras has been dubbed the "Ube man" after growing a massive white ube in his garden.

Homer Menzi unearthed a 6-foot white ube weighing 28 kilos on Thursday. He admitted that this was the first time he had grown an 'Ube' of this size.

"Dati naming tinaniman ito pero ngayon lang ulit nahukay kasi nagpunta kaming Agoo kaya ngayon lang namin nakita, kaya medyo malaki-laki (We planted this before but we just harvested it recently because we went to Agoo and we just saw this today so it's a bit bigger than usual)," Menzi said.

Menzi's neighbors were also very surprised so they posted snaps of it on social media.

"Noong una kasi may ganun din kaso 13 kilos lang. Natutuwa kami kasi may ganun kalaking ube, naaliw lang na i-post ito (There used to be something similar, but it only weighed 13 kilos. We are happy with the size of 'Ube', we were just happy to post it)," said Menzi's cousin Jayson Pacio.

According to the agricultural technologist of Tuba town Michelle Saingan, Menzi's white ube is extraordinary.

"The ube kasi, the longer na nagse-stay siya sa lupa nagshi-shrink siya, liliit or mayroon din 'yung tinatawag na palayon o mabubulok 'yun sa ilalim ng lupa. Kaya 'yung [ube ni Menzi] siguro isa-subject natin siya for further study (The lengthier the ube stays under the ground, the more it shrinks, it will decrease in size or there's what we call 'palayon' or it will decompose in the soil. So we will undertake it for further study)," said Michelle Saingan.

The reasonable quality of the soil is said to be the secret to having the enormous ube.

"Mas maganda kung 'yung lupa malambot, wag 'yung matigas para madaling tumubo, gaya nito fertile ng lupa (It is better if the soil is soft, not harsh so that it can easily grow, just like this, the soil is fertile)," Menzi advised.

However, Menzi sold the giant white ube to Good Shepherd, one of the most popular pasalubong shops in Baguio, and they were also amazed.

"Maliban sa organized farmers namin sila, quality rin kasi 'yung seedlings na itinatanim nila kaya bubunga ng quality so bale na-surprise ako na makakita ng ganyan kalaking ube (Besides being our organized farmers, the seedlings that they plant are also of good quality, so the harvest is also of good quality, I was just surprised to see an 'Ube' that big)," said Michael Amagod, the purchasing officer of Good Shepherd.

Tuba has a 12-hectare ube plantation, the second-largest in Benguet.


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