Straw Bale Gardening under Glass

A Straw bale garden under glass?

where is the sun?
Creative Commons License photo credit: cotaro70s

Our summer weather has been a disaster. Rain and cold is the definition of most days and I don’t have to tell you that doesn’t do any favor for the gardens.

When I noticed this trend didn’t seem to want to change, I covered most of my gardens with plastic or glass. I wondered at the time if I was over-reacting but from the results of my gardens and the neighboring gardens I think I made the right choice.

The hay bale garden was a little more difficult as a prepared hay bale weighs quite a lot. But I moved the hay bale with a trolley and the plants were young, so it didn’t seem to make a difference in the plants.

I also set up another 2 hay bales since growing under glass I will now have a longer growing season.

One of my first bales had a crop of lettuce growing in three stages for a longer supply of fresh greens. All stages are now done so I soaked the bale with a liquid fertilizer and added more topsoil. I plan on planting bush cucumbers in the front of the bale and a row of pole beans in the back. The back of the bale has a trellis so the beans will grow up that. HARVEST
Creative Commons License photo credit: Ross C.

I have several crops growing in a cold frame so I will add one of these to the following bale after I have treated it and few more days.

So far with my weather the hay bales sitting under glass are doing well. I had a small mini greenhouse I made of windows that were being tossed. The structure took a day to set up. The roof is a thick plastic. I don’t trust glass in a roof. Just in case it breaks I don’t want anyone injured.

Straw Bale Garden challenges

Next week we are actually going to have sun and a few dry days. It will be interesting to see how the hay bales do in a warm environment. I may have to water them more or add a little more compost to help keep the bales cool and moist.

The biggest challenge I see with the garden under glass is keeping the crops watered well if the temperatures finally decide to warm up.

How to cover your garden

If your in a situation like me, too much rain and cold days and nights, and feel your garden would do better being covered there are several ways to do this.

  • Move as many of your crops or second crops into containers as possible.
  • Create row covers for you beds. This is easier on raised beds or wide rows.
  • Build a mini greenhouse. There are several min greenhouse that can be made of old windows or plastic pipe that can be put up in a few hours to a day.

If  it will save your garden crops the extra work is worth the time.

My covered hay bale gardens seem to be doing well. The plants are healthy and growing well. And I don’t see any insects so wee will see how the garden grows as the season progresses.

Orange Zinnia
Creative Commons License photo credit: ellievanhoutte

And if anyone has some spare sunshine, please send it my way!

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Denise

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