Using the straw bale gardening system for growing your own food has far reaching benefits over traditional vegetable gardening and ensures a growth of vigorous healthy plants for you and your family.
Once the straw bale garden is set up, it takes far less maintenance from you on a day to day basis, because it cuts out the need for endless weeding, and given our busy lifestyle this is a huge bonus. As an additional benefit is the fact that you will use far less space to grow more vegetables, compared to the traditional method of growing your own food, also you will find that your produce will be a lot healthier.
Short of space? It does not matter because you can design your vegetable garden setup around whatever space you have available in your back yard, whether it is on soil or grass, you can even grow on concrete, as long as it gets a fair amount of sun. A further benefit of using straw bales to grow your own vegetables is that when you reach the end of the growing season you will be able to compost the used materials and have some healthy mulch ready for the next growing season.
The Benefits of Straw Bale Gardening
In the following section we outline some very compelling reasons why you should consider using straw bales gardening to grow your own organic vegetables.
These 7 examples are taken from Duncan Carvers website www.strawbalegardeningbook.com.
… Why work harder when you can just grow smarter instead…
1 – Healthier Plants Better Vegetables
When you grow in straw bales you immediately eliminate the need for soil. The only thing required is a straw bale, some (optional) potting mix, compost and a specific method.
And because you’ve taken soil out of the equation, it also eliminates all soil borne diseases and pests that can bring your crops to their knees when they get out of control. Just check out how healthy these tomatoes look…
…also keep in mind – the less pests diseases that are around, means less need to use pesticides (organic or otherwise) which can also harm beneficial insects that we actually want to attract to our gardens. It also means that our plants are just much healthier overall; we really don’t need or want that kind of stuff on the food we eat.
2 – No Soil Means No More Hard Work
Not having to deal with soil means there’s no digging, no tilling, hoeing, or raking. We don’t need to break our backs doing any of that stuff, or use expensive machines to do it either. Nor do we have to worry about crop rotation cycles or conditioning and improving our soils. You can simply plant right into the bales themselves (which you can put literally anywhere)…
3 – No More Weeds
Growing in straw bales pretty much eliminates the need for weeding. Weeds just don’t take well to the straw throughout the growing season, and any initial weeds that might sprout early on, can easily be pinched out of the bales roots and all. From then on in you’re not likely to spend more than a few minutes per bale for the ENTIRE growing season…
4 – Self Composting Growing Containers
When you grow in straw, the bales themselves are your actual growing containers… They are also “self composting” growing containers that are slowly decomposing internally throughout the growing season. This produces a certain amount of heat which regulates the internal temperature, keeping it ideal for the roots of your plants. It also helps to mitigate the impacts of any frosts or sudden cold snaps too and can extend your growing season. This also means, if you’re growing cold weather crops in your bales over winter, you’re going to give your plants a much more favorable growing environment. Yes, you can grow in straw bales over winter too ;-0
5 – Straw Bales Are Cheap
Straw is cheap it is usually pretty easy to get (even if you’re living in a city or suburbia). Plus at the end of a growing season, you can just bang it in the compost bin or use it as mulch on your traditional garden beds. So you’re going to end up saving money because you’re essentially investing in next season’s compost (and you’ll know exactly what’s in it)… …last season’s straw bales used as a mulch to help condition the soil.
6 – Flexibility Creativity
You can design a straw bale garden however you like. It can be as small as you like… …or it can be as big as you like… You can place your bales directly on the lawn, on concrete, pavers, or your patio. With a straw bale garden, you really are only limited by your imagination and your available space…
7 – Much More Comfortable, Easier Gardening
Because straw bales are roughly 400mm high, you’re going to be gardening at a much more comfortable height… For anyone with a bad back – or anyone that just doesn’t really enjoy crawling around on their knees, this is great news. And that really only just scratches the surface as far as the benefits of growing in straw goes, see more… While This Straw Bale Garden Might Be Small…
Here is a video showing the results of hobby gardener using the straw bale system.
Because of our busy lifestyle and a desire for healthy food choices, most of us are always on the lookout for an easier way to grow our own organic food with the least amount of work, and the best results possible and this method makes sense.