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"...I took Joel's straw bale gardening class in the spring of 2008, and did so only out of curiosity after 45 years of growing a traditional garden. I did end up planting six bales and had terrific luck growing everything in the straw bales. I am going to do 12 bales next year!"
- Bill, Norwood Young America MN
"...It seems like every day that some crazy new concept in gardening comes along, and most are silly or a waste of time and money! This straw bale gardening concept really works. I only planted two bales because that is all I could get into my car and trunk (kind of messy but worth it!) but after following the instructions you provided, I planted and grew the best tomatoes and potatoes I have ever grown. I have told all my friends and they are going to try it next year. You have made me a believer."
- Andrea, Elk River MN
"I had no idea what to expect, but Joel covered every single question and gave very detailed instructions in his class for straw bale growing. One more thing, the class is very informative about lots of gardening stuff, not just straw bale gardens, l really enjoyed it very much!"
- Dorris, South Saint Paul MN
"...I have been a gardener my whole life but my limited mobility has made it harder for me to bend down. Straw bale gardening is amazing... I am able to garden again, and have even produced greater results than my friends with traditional gardens. I am so happy to be able to continue my passion for gardening. Thank you Joel!"
- Mildred, Roseville MN
KSMQ Garden Connections
Straw Bale Gardens
- Written by Joel Karsten
Straw Bale Gardening is simply a different type of container gardening. The main difference is that the container is the straw bale itself and is held together with two or three strings. Once the straw inside the bale begins to decay the straw becomes "conditioned" compost that creates an extraordinary plant rooting environment. Getting the straw bales conditioned is an essential part of the process, and should be started two weeks prior to your target planting date wherever you are located. This gardening technique works well anywhere in the country or the world for that matter.
View Joel Karsten's Straw Bale Garden's article in the New York Times
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