Straw Bale Gardening

Our straw bales are still available at our Ramsey location at:

8846 Highway 10

Ramsey, MN 55303

Contact us for your discounted copy of Straw Bale Gardens Complete by Joel Karsten.


After years of talking with our customers about what works and doesn’t work for them, it keeps coming back to one answer. Read this book and follow the program. Our customers who are the most successful, give rave reviews to what they have learned from this book. Its clear, simple, realistic and doable. While many have tried to reinvent the wheel, this is the one that works the best and is the simplest to follow.

Joel is a Minnesota native and this program was specifically designed to work here. He has now traveled the world teaching his methods, that can be adapted for varying climates and conditions, everywhere he goes. It just WORKS.


Why garden with Straw Bales?

• Poor soil
• No space for a garden in full sun site
• No containers or soil to buy – you just need a good source of straw bales
• Accessible
• No kneeling
• Can work sitting down

Tips for Laying out the Bales

• Mostly level
• Configuration that fits your space
• Strings exposed
• Cut side up
• End posts



• 11 days
• 1,2, 3 – water bales thoroughly
• 4,5,6 – ½ cup urea per bale and water-in thoroughly
• 7,8,9 – ¼ cup urea per bale and water-in thoroughly
• 10,11- water thoroughly
• Check soil temperature – it should be only slightly warm
• Plant



For Seed

Large seeds and for individual plants (cucurbits, legumes, beets and chard, kale,
kohlrabi, etc.)
• Remove a chunk of straw and fill the hole with potting soil

Small seeds or to plant in rows
• Put a couple inches of potting soil on top of the bale(s) and Make sure it’s level
• Water carefully so it doesn’t wash away
• Or cut the bottom out of a plastic flat, pin it down onto top of bale, fill with soil and plant

For Transplants
• Remove some straw to make a hole large enough for the root ball.
• Plant seedlings as you would in a bed at the proper/final spacing.



• Watering – drip/soaker hose
• Fertilizing – as for ground beds
• Support – end posts provide uprights to
run wire or string to support vining
crops or tomatoes