Cultivation of straw bales is a technique that comes to us from North America. It is known as Straw Bale Gardening and makes growing vegetables easy and convenient. The strawbales are therefore above ground, but they nourish the earth by changing with the seasons. Discover the technique of cultivation on straw bales as well as all its advantages for a functional and fruitful vegetable garden.
Growing on straw bales: why and how?
The goal of this culture is quite simple: find bales of straw and sow or plant your plants in them. The straw is then decomposing, which will provide the nutrients necessary for the plants.
The use of this system is that it does not necessitate any groundwork and does not necessitate any specific sort of culture because the cultures do not require soil. It thus helps to avoid weeds while providing a more pleasant surface for the back since the boots are raised.
Straw provides an ideal place for plants to grow since it is an airy and well-drained environment. In addition, it produces heat as it decomposes, which keeps plants at an ambient temperature of around 20 ° C.
However, this technique is very greedy in water but also in fertilizer rich in nitrogen. To activate the decomposition process, water and nitrogen must be supplied regularly.
Which plants to grow on the straw?
Vegetable plants do well in this environment. However, the straw has a limited lifespan of about two years. You can quickly grow tomatoes, zucchini, peppers, beans, potatoes, herbs, strawberries, pears, melons, cucumbers, and even squash. Be careful. Carrots do not grow very well in straw.
Can all types of straw be used?
Wheat straw has the advantage of decomposing more slowly than oats or barley, for example. Choose organic preferably to avoid chemicals in your plantations. Avoid hay at all costs, and it is not suitable for planting.
Your straw bale should be tight enough and the stems installed vertically to optimize the passage of water and fertilizer to the roots.
How to cultivate a vegetable garden on bales of straw?
Before you start, you need to prepare your boots. Please place them in a very sunny place and water them several times for 3 days to moisten them well. Add nitrogen-rich fertilizer and water for another week. You can also add compost to the boot and cover it with a tarp in addition to water and nitrogen to activate fermentation faster.
You can then start sowing and planting 10 days after fermentation and when the boot drops to 20 ° C.
Add potting soil to the boot and place your seedlings. For plantings, make holes in the straw and fill them with potting soil. Then you need to water daily and add fertilizer once a week.