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Kitchen Gardening

Build a Garden Out of Straw

This inexpensive veggie bed requires no digging, no weeding, and no need for crop rotation

Fine Gardening - Issue 133
Is it a modern-art installation? No, four bales of hay and some compost create the easiest vegetable garden you’ll ever build. Photo: Amy Stewart

I spotted my first straw-bale vegetable bed at a garden show in Seattle, Washington, and I knew immediately that I would copy the idea when I got home. If the exhibitor was handing out instructions, I don’t remember getting them. But that didn’t matter: The whole concept was fairly straightforward and looked like it came together easily. No digging, no weeding, and nothing but a pile of compost left over at the end of the season? Sign me up, I thought. I’m a fickle gardener who likes to move things around, so I also liked that I could set up a straw-bale garden in a different spot every year, unlike raised beds that are designed to stay in place.

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