straw bale gardening

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gardener4life
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straw bale gardening

Postby gardener4life » Thu Nov 09, 2017 9:55 pm

So question on straw bale gardening...

Is it better to get the straw bales now before the snow hits and put them out there so they can get a good start on bacteria growth before spring hits? Or is it better to wait until March or April to get them to put them out for gardening?

If it helps I'm an experienced gardening with several years experience but I've never done straw bales before. I stumbled on this idea recently and people say that it works pretty well and can help rejuvenate your soil. Also availability now vs in March or April could be an issue too. Any thoughts or advise welcome.

(Also on a flip side I've been surprised that the more I study self sufficiency the more I realize how little we know about what it takes to get our food. It is a very complex and time intensive process that people don't think about but affects our ability to survive. Things like shelter, and clothing aren't a big deal to fix, but if something were to happen to people's ability to get food it would really be a mess.)

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Yahtzee
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Re: straw bale gardening

Postby Yahtzee » Sat Nov 11, 2017 1:35 am

This is where they are used as raised beds, correct? They are not recommended for Utah as they require a lot more water. They are also more susceptible to temperature changes and nutrient leeching.
If that doesn't talk you out of it, I have soooooo many more rodent problems whenever I bring straw bales into my yard. Plus messy.
They're great at improving the soil underneath them, but you can do that for free with leaves right now ;-)
Positive side -Plants LOVE all that lose soil. They grow really well when properly irrigated.
I keep editing my post because i have two thoughts going with now vs spring.
You have the chance to get ever better compost doing it now. But you run the risk of leaching out more nitrogen. Do you have access to manure??? Also overwintering mice....
It's fun to look at new things. I gave hugelkulture a real effort, but ran into the same water problems. If love to hear how it goes.
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gardener4life
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Re: straw bale gardening

Postby gardener4life » Sat Nov 11, 2017 1:53 am

Well the idea is that I haven't fertilized well last year. Also everyone I know in my town that gardens had an awful gardening year this year 2017's summer and fall. So I think its necessary to try something to rebound. Like if you ask around on tomatoes nobody got anything for tomatoes this year it was crazy. (Well I say that in relative since. I got tomatoes but at about 1/3 the amount I usually get and I think that's how it went for others too.)

I need to improve my soil this year.

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Yahtzee
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Re: straw bale gardening

Postby Yahtzee » Sat Nov 11, 2017 2:16 am

You're probably already going to need to add nitrogen then. This is a high amount of carbon to add to possibly already poor soil, but I think doing it now and then soil testing in the spring might help you get the dirt you need.
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