Straw Bale Gardening

Discussion in 'Gardening and Agriculture' started by lovetogrow, Jan 26, 2011.

  1. lovetogrow

    lovetogrow Member

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  2. *Andi

    *Andi Supporting Member

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    The guy down the road does the Straw Bale Gardening and loves it ... I did check his out but didn't try it.

    As for the Growing Potatoes in Straw ... :2thumb: I have done that a few times. The only problem I ever had was the snakes :eek: they like it that way also.
     

  3. mosquitomountainman

    mosquitomountainman I invented the internet. :rofl:

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    I've grown potatoes under straw but did it a little differently than the guy in the link. I had some "waste" ground on an old rail road right-of-way that was nothing except clinkers and thistles.

    I put spuds down on the ground (no tilling or other preparation) then piled about 24 inches of loose straw on top. Then, like he said, I waited and waited and waited ... Finally potato plants began poking through the top of the straw. During the season after they blossom you can slide your hands to the bottom of the plants and pick potatoes without disturbing the rest of them on the plant. As the summer wears on the straw compacts so put plenty on when you plant them.

    At harvest time in the fall when the tops were dead we just used a pitch fork and forked up the hay and picked the potatoes off the ground. The cool thing is that they're clean and pretty. I don't think we got more potatoes that way but we got as much as conventional methods.

    We composted the old straw and used it the following year as compost. We also found one rabbit nest (occupied with baby rabbits). We covered it back up but the cat found them and killed/ate them all. We found one nest of snake eggs (but no snake). You might want to be careful when reaching into the straw with your hands if you have poisonous snakes around. I thought we might have mice nests in the straw and find our potatoes eaten but we didn't. Probably because the snake ate the mice!
     
  4. IrritatedWithUS

    IrritatedWithUS Well-Known Member

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    :D This is news to me! Awesome, I have a new project
     
  5. lovetogrow

    lovetogrow Member

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    Thanks for the tips about the snakes Andi and mosquitomountainman...luckily we don't have any poisonous snakes in my neck of the woods, but how good is it that they keep the mice at bay.

    IrriatedWithUS - Glad you find this info helpful - hope it works out for you :thumbraise:
     
  6. SaskDame

    SaskDame Well-Known Member

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    This looks good for people who have more water than wanted or needed this comming year. For here, we still have exceptional drainage so I am waffling.
     
  7. The_Blob

    The_Blob performing monkey

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    with the heat generated from composting I'm thinking you could get a lot of early planting done (late winter), especially of root vegetables, and by the time true planting season came you would have many good sized plants as opposed to mere seeds? I'm also thinking that with all the plants & space needed to get a good corn crop, it would NOT be amongst my 1st choices...
     
  8. vn6869

    vn6869 Afraid, very afraid

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    Andi, thanks for the snakes thing, sounded like a great idea until I read your post thanks a lot! Here we do have poisonous snakes, but I just dislike snakes anyway. :eek:
     
  9. HozayBuck

    HozayBuck Well-Known Member

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    I did this one year... but I laid a bed of straw with cow flops on it then the spud sprouts then more straw and more flops... watered it as usual.. got a lot of spuds!! we had rattlers in area so I never put anything anyplace I couldn't see... no probs tho...
     
  10. lovetogrow

    lovetogrow Member

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    Thanks for the cowflap layering tip HozayBuck :2thumb:
     
  11. HozayBuck

    HozayBuck Well-Known Member

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    Well they are free and usually where you find em... :D... OH!! important!! don't use the green ones!!! :D:D:D
     
  12. *Andi

    *Andi Supporting Member

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    I know what you mean about snakes ... they just give me a chill. Out of the three rows of straw tators, we had a snake in each row the first two we had black snakes and the last was a copperhead. (Which I was always told would never happen :scratch)

    The potatoes were great ... easy to grow and easy to pick up. :congrat: If you can get past the snakes.