Balegrow winner of the EEV Environment Education Awards
Growing strawberries in a strawbale

Planting in the Side of Your Bale


Many of my BaleGrow customers are amazed when I tell them you can plant in the side of your bale. Even more are amazed when they actually see it in real life.
This was one of the things I love most about Straw Bale Gardening. The idea of using the whole bale… surface and sides! This not only looks great but is also functional.

To get the best results when planting in the side of your bale, I generally wait for one season of planting. This means go ahead and plant on the surface of your bale after day 15 and stick to planting whatever is in season at the time. After 2-3 months of growing and harvesting, your bale is now soft enough to plant straight into the sides.

What you do next is simple. Carefully push apart your straw on the side you are planting into. Make a hole big enough to hold your seedling. You may need to pull some straw out of the bale to create an area big enough for the root system (depending on what you’re planting.) Pop your plant inside the hole and push the surrounding straw back around the transplant. Give it a water and splash of Seasol if you have any and sit back and watch it grow.

Things to remember:
•    Plant what’s in season
•    Wait 2 – 3 months before planting in the side
•    Don’t cut the string
•    Vine plants work really well so do strawberries
•    Plant in the side that gets the most sun: minimum 5 – 6 hours
•    Water in well