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Hogge has bumper crop thanks to his strawbales

When not serving as a captain on a VIMS research vessel, Capt. Voight “Bubba” Hogge of Gloucester most of the time can be found tending to his garden.

Hogge is quite literally over his head in produce as his strawbale garden towers over him. He grows cherry tomatoes, Better Boy tomatoes, bell peppers and jalapeno peppers by the bucket in his backyard, thanks to the strawbale gardening method.

Hogge’s preferred method of gardening came after he read “Straw Bale Gardens” by Joel Karsten, which gave him the how-to knowledge on the subject. Karsten would later mention Hogge in a 2018 TED talk on the subject.

Hogge’s garden uses only organic methods to produce his crops, such as Espoma Organic Tomato-tone fertilizer he uses. He also collects rainwater to hydrate his plants rather than using well water.

He said he started growing vegetables out of strawbales a decade ago, but says this year’s haul is larger than any in the past. One afternoon, he said, he spent about four hours ...

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