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This Week’s Guest Blogger is Simon Gibbons, the owner of StrawBaleVeg UK and he writes about Growing Vegetables in Straw Bales

When my family and I move to our present house on the edge of the famous Viking Way we inherited a very large garden. I was determined to grow masses of vegetables. I come from generations of farmers but was not by any means an expert gardener. So, I read. A lot. My one concern was that as a young girl, my wife had been involved in a serious road accident. The specialist at the time said the pain she suffered in her back would get worse as she got older. He was right. I wondered if there was a method of gardening that did not involve quite so much bending. I cast about looking both here and abroad. I came at last across strawbale gardening. Due to the height of the strawbales it is great for people with mobility issues. You don’t need soil so it follows that you can site your strawbale garden on most surfaces. Concrete, grass etc. This makes it ideal for wheelchair users. It’s a no dig method and weed free. I set about refining the method and found it was very successful. Most vegetables can be grown in strawbales. My personal favourites are potatoes, runner beans, onions, cabbage and lettuce.

Over a drink one night with a pal we were discussing strawbale gardening and he suggested I start a Facebook group. I did and it now has over two and a half thousand members. I thought there could be something here. I now teach strawbale gardening, have my own range of vegetable herb and flower seeds and I have released my own e-book on the subject. Its not just a question of pushing a few seeds in a bale, it is a little more complicated than that, but perfectly doable. In the book it lists different strawbale setups. Many have all round access so very good for wheelchair users. All parts of this method can be done from a sitting position. The book tells you day by day how to “mature” the strawbales. This means adding a nitrogen-based feed and water to get the bales composting. This makes an ideal environment for seeds and plants to thrive. I have people from Manchester to Melbourne who have had marvellous results. The very first thing I grew was tomatoes. The book goes into the how to of this as well. It is packed with hints and tips. I have people with just one strawbale outside their patio doors to massive twenty bale systems. It’s so accessible to everyone. You are welcome to get in touch with me through my website


If you want to give it a grow here is the link to my ebook. https://www.strawbaleveg.co.uk/thebook

I hope you get bumper crops.


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