From Mother Earth News: "I think I've discovered the perfect compromise method for growing tomatoes (and other garden produce) indoors . . . a Golden Mean between the high-tech effectiveness of hydroponic cultivation and the simplicity-and lower cost-of raising plants in soil. I'm talking about straw-bale culture, a technique I heard of only after hauling some 300 cubic feet of pumice, gravel, and dirt to fill the planting beds of my new solar-heated greenhouse.
As I paused in the middle of that task to contemplate (and curse) the necessity of trucking still more earth to my conservatory, some sympathetic friends came to my rescue with tales of "soilless" hothouse gardening. Needless to say, the idea caught my fancy immediately. After all, who wouldn't exchange the transfer of tons of terra firma for the lifting of a little straw? "