- Paperback: 176 pages
- Publisher: Cool Springs Press; New edition (February 15, 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1591869072
- ISBN-13: 978-1591869078
- Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.5 x 9.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 803 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #39,291 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Straw Bale Gardens Complete Paperback – February 15, 2015
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"Are you ready to learn about a transformative garden technology that could change your life - for less than $100?" - New York Times
About the Author
Joel Karsten developed the straw bale gardening method more than ten years ago. As interest grew, he became one of the most in-demand garden lecturers in the country. A pioneer and an entrepreneur, Karsten has been featured in the New York Times, national television and radio, and dozens of other major media outlets. Karsten has a degree in horticulture from the University of Minnesota, and currently resides in Roseville, Minnesota.
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Top customer reviews
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I'll make this short and sweet...I put in two bales this year as a trial and the results were not good...there were incredibly good!!!
I put in four tomatoes, three peppers, a zucchini, and a lemon cucumber on two bales, consciously trying to stress the concept to see what it would deliver.
I will never garden any other way! The plants all grew rapidly and have been exuberantly productive. In addition, for the first time in 25 years living in this location (San Francisco Peninsula), I have not had to fight the slugs and snails! One tried to climb the bale but gave up. What a relief to be freed of that struggle.
We're waiting for the huge crop of tomatoes to ripen while we harvest zucchini, cucumbers, and peppers.
I wholeheartedly recommend Mr. Karsten's book!
So, being the overachiever I am, I put heavy black plastic over my raised garden soil to fully kill any living plants in the original bed. Then I measured and built a 32-bale garden on top of the black plastic sheeting [DON'T DO THIS, per the instructions in the book! I'd already done this step prior to buying the manual!]. After placing/conditioning/planting the bales, I spread four more bales of straw over the black plastic, to try to mitigate the book-described problems with the plastic.
I have to say I LOVE LOVE LOVE SBGs!! Mr. Karsten's book is truly a step-by-step "How-to...," and I recommend it above other SBG books (a few of which I bought at the same time).
Please try this type of garden, using just this one book; you won't be disappointed!
Oct 2 2013 UPDATE: This was the best veggie garden we have had. The only problem is that we had tried to many different plants in two straw bales.Crops that grew very tall ( Basel and tomatoes)overshadowed the smaller height plants like carrots and onions. We will extend the bales next year and have a section for smaller plants by themselves. Otherwise the plants liked the conditions. It is important to keep the watering up at ;east evry couple days.. For a first year experiment thumbs up..
The book is worthwhile for great illustrations and the basics of straw bale gardening. Supplement the book by Googling "Straw Bale Gardening" and get some advice from others that have also been employing this technique for years.
One other note. I expected the bales to breakdown more than they did before planting. The best tool I found for planting is an old hatchet. I whack away where I want to plant things that come in pots to make the hole for planting.