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Strawbale Gardening: Harvesting My Straw bale garden, WITHOUT my 4-legged Helpers

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 24, 2009
2:09 PM

Post #6590677

Well here it is! I cannot believe that I planted the first of this garden on March 2, and didnt put in the Squash plants till April. I have already eaten Zuchini that were at least 8' in length. I am going crazy watching the little yellow squash growing, mouth a'droolin'!

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 24, 2009
2:15 PM

Post #6590715

Here are the Grape tomatoes that I planted ( a tiny Scraggly little guy ) on March 22. The actual plant is over 3and a half ft. tall with branches climbing through the bales. It is covered with blooms and hanging with fruit!
I am now trying to prune it back and tying it to the frame!

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 24, 2009
2:22 PM

Post #6590735

I planted my red potatoes( gleaned from my kitchen pantry) on April 15th. Today I just couldnt stand it so I pulled aside some of the hay and looky looky, I have potatoes ! This one is only about 2 inches in length, so I covered it up and checked in on the White ones...

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 24, 2009
2:25 PM

Post #6590748

I didnt dig to far before finding this little fella. Since the plants are still in bloom I need to quit doing this!LOL! I just cant stand it! I love to see what they are doing under all this hay and I cant wait to try them out with a little Milk and butter!

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 24, 2009
2:27 PM

Post #6590755

Zuchini babies! Planted the End of March.

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 24, 2009
2:32 PM

Post #6590776

Yellow Squash, so many babies that they arent growing fast enough in size, just keep putting on more and more fruit! I will have to resort to culling out the oldest soon so that the newer ones will have room,... now I just wonder what in the world Im going to do with all these 4 and 5 inch culls??? : }

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 24, 2009
2:35 PM

Post #6590795

Still waiting on the pole beans! They just keep climbing and a bloomin'. Should see tiny little beans soon!

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tubbytee
Ames, NE
(Zone 5b)

May 24, 2009
3:55 PM

Post #6591045

Your snooping is being watched by garden guard..LOL

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 24, 2009
8:01 PM

Post #6591811

Ooooh , If only I had had room for cabbage!!!
KentNC
Wake Forest, NC

May 24, 2009
9:16 PM

Post #6592062

Eufaula: looking good!
Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 24, 2009
10:01 PM

Post #6592203

Thanks Kent, I really have tried hard to do this and its paying off! NOW,... How about some photos from you guys. Lets see all those pretty gardens!
tubbytee
Ames, NE
(Zone 5b)

May 24, 2009
11:38 PM

Post #6592542


Eufaula where is Diesel..He is okay right..Everything looks so good





Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 25, 2009
11:09 AM

Post #6594073

Here I am Tubbytee, She wont let me help in the Garden any more...says Im too destructive NOT Constructive!! Hmmmph! Me??? D.
Thanks Tubby, How about some More pics of your garden! Id love too see them. E.

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frausnow
Winterville, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 25, 2009
7:25 PM

Post #6596088

I'm a first time straw bale gardener starting with 10 bales. Oh, how I wish I had more bales! Everything is growing like crazy! In fact, I'm afraid I might have planted things a bit too close and may have to thin out some plants. I transplanted my seedlings (after hardening off), into the bales around April 25th.

Here's the cabbage and some eggplants.

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frausnow
Winterville, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 25, 2009
7:27 PM

Post #6596096

Anaheim Peppers & a couple of mildly hotter peppers

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frausnow
Winterville, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 25, 2009
7:30 PM

Post #6596113

Eggplants - Something is eating the leaves. There are tiny pin holes all over the leaves. Any ideas for an organic type insecticide?

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frausnow
Winterville, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 25, 2009
7:35 PM

Post #6596138

Tomatoes - cherry, paste, seedless (for hubby who has diverticulitis), Celebrity, Amish. In case you're wondering what those red things are, I read somewhere that tomatoes plants grow stronger and put out redder tomatoes with red plastic under them while they grow. Since the plants are doing so well, I have removed them to provide more air circulation and prevent fungal disease.

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frausnow
Winterville, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 25, 2009
7:37 PM

Post #6596148

All ten bales.

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frausnow
Winterville, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 25, 2009
7:41 PM

Post #6596178

Potato plants just starting to peek through the straw. I purchased 3 laundry baskets at the dollar store, poked holes in the bottoms, layered about 4" of straw and the potato seed, then just covered them with another 1" of straw. Each time as the plants grow to 4" in height I will apply another layer of straw. It's just a trial to see how it does this year. If it works, I'll buy some more next year!

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frausnow
Winterville, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 25, 2009
7:45 PM

Post #6596209

I also made 4 raised beds for the radishes, beets, carrots, lettuces, strawberries, peas, beans, limas, squashes, cukes, and onions. BTW, I had some onion sets left over and last week I stuck them in the strawbales and they're about 3" high already! Those straw bales totally rock!

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 25, 2009
7:54 PM

Post #6596264

Oh my Frausnow, what a wonderful bale garden! I have the same problem, I planted too close and too much, on just a few bales(8). Everything I have is growing great and already producing fruit.
Next year I definitely will have a bigger garden and I plan to start getting info on bales now. Actually Im looking for more bales now to get started on a late summer garden. We have such a long growing season in Georgia that I decided Im going to try keeping one going for the whole season.
I have a feeling that since the bales hold heat so well that maybe a Fall Garden would do great! well we will see!
I am using Diatomaceous earth as my organic pest deterrent. So far it hasnt failed me. If I see the beginnings of anything Pesty I sprinkle a little DE, and get the job done!
Now the DE can be expensive but well worth it. To conserve the powder I use My Handy Dandy( Kent Are You Listening?) Eufaula's "Sock-It-To-'Em" used sock 1/2 full of the DE then shake it vigorously over the plants !! Hey! Dont laugh it works! E.

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frausnow
Winterville, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 25, 2009
8:19 PM

Post #6596343

Thanks, Eufala! I'll give it a go. I think I may even have some on hand.
KentNC
Wake Forest, NC

May 25, 2009
10:25 PM

Post #6596828

Eufaula: first you invent an eufaulatum and now a sockitoum! Get those patents started ASAP! :-)

frausnow: I also had some critters eating my eggplant leaves. I used liquid sevin.
fremar
Comer, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 26, 2009
4:27 PM

Post #6600001

Eufala we're right on schedule, I'll have squash medley before the end of this week.
Frausnow, stop at Marion and Bucks and check on the plastic barrels for your potatoes. I have 4 barrels and the potatoes are growing out the tops of all of them, I posted pics somewhere just can't remember where I've been but the white barrels work best they keep the heat down.
Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 27, 2009
1:31 PM

Post #6603966

Fremar, I had a feast yesterday of Zuchini and Squash, simmered with the drippings of one piece of bacon. I was dissapointed that I had not one onion left to add but , after I started eating I really didnt care!
I need to ask a silly question now. Do ants eat potatoes? I discovered another ant bed and it is right on top of my potatoes. They are fiesty to. I am afraid to put any ant bait on them, for fear of poisoning the potatoes for eating. DE just doesnt seem to get to the bottom of the bigger nest. If I leave the ants alone for now will they harm the potatoes?
frausnow
Winterville, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 28, 2009
10:45 PM

Post #6610946

Aw, Euf! I'm jealus! I can't wait until my squashes and eggplant are ready for harvest!
Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 29, 2009
12:12 AM

Post #6611371

I love egg plant I didnt have enough room for them in the bales but I have them growing in five gallon buckets. Not growing any where as fast as the bales though!
fremar
Comer, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 30, 2009
4:53 AM

Post #6616630

I got 3 zucinni and about 12 yellows tonight, here's a shot of my zukes first time in a bale and amazing.

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fremar
Comer, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 30, 2009
4:56 AM

Post #6616637

I can't get over how much easier this bale gardening is. My bell peppers and some of my tomatoes are planted in dirt and I am constantly weeding, here are some volunteers, the carrots I had dug up while thinning the barrels and just on a whim stuck them in the hay bale and they are HUGE

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fremar
Comer, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 30, 2009
4:58 AM

Post #6616643

OK euffie remember you asked for pictures, this is a little less than half my garden space

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fremar
Comer, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 30, 2009
4:59 AM

Post #6616652

and these are my taters and carrots

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 30, 2009
1:43 PM

Post #6617465

Oh My Gosh! Beautiful, just B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L-!!!
Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 30, 2009
2:20 PM

Post #6617561

Well , here is my haul from today! Doesnt seem like much , but this the third time this week that I have "Culled" the veggies! They are growing so close together and fast that I have a feast each night and am freezing what I dont eat! I planted 2 yellow Crookneck and 2 zukes.

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 30, 2009
2:23 PM

Post #6617573

Hanging Gardens of Squash!

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 30, 2009
2:27 PM

Post #6617589

As you can see I have a mini-jungle! Just look at those Kentucky Wonders climbing. Beans soon!

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 30, 2009
2:32 PM

Post #6617606

Closer look at teeny weeny little beanies!

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fremar
Comer, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 30, 2009
4:21 PM

Post #6617924

OMG
I am sooooo jealous, I know you got an earlier start than I did I can only hope mine look that good in 3 or 4 weeks.
Congrats Eufala that is fantastic, needless to say you're as convinced as I am about this bale gardening.
Filaluvr
Merkel, TX

May 30, 2009
7:34 PM

Post #6618567

Might try cinnamon sprinkled on top of the ant problem areas. i buy mine at sams in bulk. They dont seem to care much for it and usually leave. Sometimes we add DE to the cinnamon as well. Kathy
stephanietx
Fort Worth, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 30, 2009
8:00 PM

Post #6618637

Is it okay if I borrow the DE "sock it to em" idea? That's a brilliant way of distributing DE!
Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 30, 2009
9:41 PM

Post #6618930

Fremar---- I dont know what I would have done this year If the Strawbale DG'ers hadnt convinced me on what to do! All My gardening equipment that could have dug up or tilled this Red Clay either went with the "Divorce Tide" or was left here because it was broke. So with little money and little land and a couple of bales , look what anyone can do!
Kathy---- HMMM , cinnamon , I never knew that! Ive tried the DE and epsom salt earlier , and it helped for a while.The bigger aggressive ants that started at the bottom of the bales and worked themselves to the top are real boogers! Yep I'm going to try the cinnamon technique next! Thanks gal!
Stephanietx----- You go right ahead LOL!!!!! I am flattered that you asked and seriously want to try it! It does work! I believe I have a big bottle of cinnamon in the pantry , Im going to make a blend of DE and Cin. today and get my trusty "Socketuem" and SOCK-IT-TO-EM!!!
Harmonyplace

(Zone 7b)

May 31, 2009
12:22 AM

Post #6619488

WOW! Beautiful Garden It's got me wanting to try this :) Could you tell us in details how you did it from the start.
I'm so impressed at how lush and green the plants are just a delight for the eyes.

stephanietx
Fort Worth, TX
(Zone 8a)

May 31, 2009
12:35 AM

Post #6619536

Eufaula~Our problem with applying DE has always been trying to apply it lightly. It's almost impossible if you don't have one of those powder sprayer things. DE works best when it's lightly applied and not applied in clumps. I think the sock trick will work well.
Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 31, 2009
12:37 AM

Post #6619543

Sure! Go Back and Click on Home---communities---General Gardening---Strawbale Gardening , then read all the threads from the beginning . Its a lot but worth it, You'll get the hang of it right away!
Or just read the first thread and enjoy!!!
Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 31, 2009
12:41 AM

Post #6619556

Stephanietx-- You are so right! I was spreading it , just by hand then I Tried the hand pumper thingy and even tried the rotary hand held seed spreader--- Lordy at the wasted DE!! So I remembered how my dear Daddy used to spread Sevin dust...TaDah!!! So I really can not claim the idea , but borrowed it from My Dad.
Harmonyplace

(Zone 7b)

May 31, 2009
12:48 AM

Post #6619576

I bet Lettuce and Cabbage would do great in these this fall and maybe some broccoli.

How long before fall should i start the bales to get in a fall crop?

digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

May 31, 2009
12:53 AM

Post #6619595

Fraus , A member of dg was at a mini roundup last year and he grows everything organic . Bronx Boy is his name and I dmailed him . He told me that he uses Neem . I got some and its an insecticide , fungicide , and something else , don't remember. You can use it right up to harvest and it isn't expensive . You don't hold it over , just mix up what you'll need that treatment .I paid 14.00 for about a pint and only use 2 T per gallon water .So far I don't have any problems , but last year I almost lost all my toms to wilt and some kind of mite. I was using two different chemicals and this is supposed to be an all in one . digger
frausnow
Winterville, GA
(Zone 7b)

May 31, 2009
9:48 PM

Post #6623284

Hey, thanks Digger for going through the trouble to find out. I heard of Neem, but didn't know it was organic.
Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

May 31, 2009
11:58 PM

Post #6623757

Uh Ohhhh! Potato vines are dying. looks like something got into them last night... well theres only one thing to do with this group...pull them out!

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

June 1, 2009
12:00 AM

Post #6623769

hehHeh Heh...Looky Looky!!!!!

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

June 1, 2009
12:02 AM

Post #6623785

and under the straw... what have we here!!! My first "TATERS" Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay!!!!

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

June 1, 2009
12:06 AM

Post #6623804

Well lets see that was 4 bushes torn up, and they were almost another week before being ready... so here is all I got but Im not complaining... ooooh whheres the butter and milk.

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digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

June 1, 2009
12:23 AM

Post #6623867

No trouble fraus , I found that out a coupla weeks ago. Just passed it on . I'm trying it , but if it'll keep bugs off my greens and fight the fungus off toms , then I'm happy . digger .
digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

June 1, 2009
12:25 AM

Post #6623874

Oofie , don't you have time to replant more taters ? I'd give it a go . digger ( sis)
Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

June 6, 2009
1:59 PM

Post #6649596

Hey I think I'll be eating Kentucky wonder Pole beans soon!!!!
Eufaulas Hanging bean garden.. No stooping to pick beans!

This message was edited Jun 6, 2009 9:59 AM

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Eufaula
Eatonton, GA
(Zone 8b)

June 6, 2009
2:04 PM

Post #6649611

Digger I meant to say to you that I planted the potatoes as an experiment, and it worked.
Since I dont have much room this year I will wait until next Spring before planting more. As much as I love Squash and they do freeze so well, ( Heehee the ones that dont get eat up first) Ive decided to plant new seeds in the potatoes place and see what happens!
As you can see I have new ones a'comin on !

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digger9083
Dahlonega, GA

June 6, 2009
2:45 PM

Post #6649727

You've inspired me to try other stuff next year . Also I just posted in the pets forum . Go look . digger
Pamgarden
Central, VA
(Zone 7b)

June 9, 2009
3:53 PM

Post #6663629

I am so envious of y'alls straw bales. So healthy looking and kind to the environment. Love those fresh, home-grown vegetables. You sure can't get anything like them at the grocery store. Tubbytee, love your serious looking cabbage. How did you do that?
tubbytee
Ames, NE
(Zone 5b)

June 9, 2009
4:11 PM

Post #6663730

Pamgarden I received an e-mail of several weird pics




another one

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Pamgarden
Central, VA
(Zone 7b)

June 13, 2009
3:58 PM

Post #6682211

Tubbytee, Too cool. Might make me think twice about going out to the garden in my pajamas, like I sometimes do. Neighbors can't see me but the cabbages might. Pam

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Other Strawbale Gardening Threads you might be interested in:

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Straw bale gardening: no weeding, no hoeing, no tilling KentNC 274 Oct 18, 2009 1:58 AM
Strawbale Gardening (part 7) Jnette 126 Mar 20, 2007 9:51 AM
Straw Bale Gardening LauraK 49 Apr 2, 2008 12:02 AM
Straw Bale Gardening (Part 8) KentNC 114 Apr 2, 2007 5:32 PM
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