Survivalist Forum banner

1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
123 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wondered if there are many folks who have tried growing vegetables on straw bales. Last summer I tried a pilot run by grouping six straw bales and I got some fairly good results with tomatoes and zucchinis. At least the gophers and grasshoppers didn't get to them like many of my other crops.
I plan to be more ambtious next time and try using more bales with different manure to the steer poop that I used.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,790 Posts
straw-bale gardening? Never even heard of it. Would you mind expanding on the mechanics of it?

Cheers,
-Per.
 

·
Member
Joined
·
96 Posts
+1 more info please
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18,814 Posts
I heard that people in apartments were good candidates for gardening with bales. No potting soil, digging, weeding, etc. Just snuggle the plant down in the bale and water as usual. You can create tiers with the bales for more growing space (upwards as opposed to ground space).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
123 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I wondered if there are many folks who have tried growing vegetables on straw bales. Last summer I tried a pilot run by grouping six straw bales and I got some fairly good results with tomatoes and zucchinis. At least the gophers and grasshoppers didn't get to them like many of my other crops.
I plan to be more ambitious next time and try using more bales with different manure to the steer poop that I used.
I guess if you need to know more about this subject, you can do searches in Google or your favorite search engine for: 'Straw-bale gardening" Hope this is helpful.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
410 Posts
Straw bale gardens (info)

I use wheat straw, it works the best. Do not use hay, it will sprout, and take over your garden. I have had great success with tomatos, peppers, squash, cucumbers, and even corn.

I line up bales, end to end, about 4-5, and a second row of bales beside so that I have 8-10 bales side by side, and end to end. Pack them in tight together, and stake the outside perimeter, to help hold together.

Water the bales thoroughly daily for 7-10 days, get them good and water logged. The bales will heat up and begin to compost. I then add compost, and garden soil, about 3 inches to the tops, and water in real good so that the soils water down into the bales. DO NOT ADD FERTILIZERS YET. Continue to water the bales, and let them cool down some from the composting process.

After about two weeks, I add a liquid fertilizer (you can use manure, or commercial fertilizers, just be careful not to burn) as per the directins of the plants I intend to grow. Continue to water daily!

About 3-4 days after adding fertilizer, you are ready to plant. Take a small garden trowel and poke slits at the recommended spacing for your plants, slide plants in bales, and press back and cover with the soil.

Monitoring water and food is key. The bales will dry out in a hearbeat, so pay close attention especially in dry hot climates. Continue to feed per your fertilizers directions. Stake all tall plants as you would normally, I try and drive the stakes through the bales and into the ground if possible.

I plant some marigolds around the base of the bales to help keep out the bugs, and snails, but since your garden is elecated above ground, this is usually not an issue. Plus, this helps keep the rabbits out as they cannot reach the tender leaves they crave.

Your bales should last atleast 2 years, as long as the twine holds them together tight, and you keep them wet, and fed with ferts, and soil.

Good luck all, this is a great way to garden, especially in a suburban area. I use to do it quite a bit before I purchased a large tract of land. It works great with most of your veggies, give it a try.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
410 Posts
Straw bales continued

Once you have tried straw bale gardening, look into what I have been trying...

STRAW BALE BUILDINGS.

I have actually learned how to build structures, and even a small house by using straw bales. This is awesome, and very energy efficient. You build similar to stick building, but the straw bales form your walls, and support your roof system. The insulation value is amazing.

Google it, and learn more about it, it comes in handy as a fall back shelter, or strage area, or even just a get away.
 

·
Gunsmith
Joined
·
203 Posts
Another thing to watch is not to stack the bales or have a bunch together because when wet they can heat up and get to the point they will self combust. i.e. burst into flames

That's why farmers don't bail straw when its wet.
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top