Month: March 2015

Straw Bale Gardening

A Straw Bale: Garden In A Small Space

What is Straw Bale Gardening?

Well, in a nutshell, it is a different type of container gardening. Instead of a plastic, metal or terra cotta container you use a bale of straw to plant in. There is a bit of conditioning to be done to the straw before you plant but once you have it starting to decompose on the inside you have a wonderful environment to grow your plants. It takes about two weeks to get your straw bale ready, by the way, so you do need to plan a little ahead.

As I have begun to age, it is harder and harder for me to bend over to turn soil for planting and to be stooped over trying to pull weeds. Using the straw bale method, all of that is a thing of the past. Weeds do not grow in the straw and there is no soil to break up.

This system is perfect for people who want a garden but have a minimal space to garden in. A bale of straw can be placed on a balcony, patio or along the building. You will need to make sure that the straw bale is placed in the right place for the sun requirements for the plants you intend to grow but other than that, you don’t have to worry about it taking up a lot of room.

You do not have to live in a specific climate for this system of gardening to work, either. As long as you have sunlight and water, even the novice at gardening can succeed with the straw bale gardening.

Consider A Rose Groundcover

Groundcovers Do Not Have To Be Just Green

There are so many types of groundcovers available to plant in our landscaping. Many come in different shades of green and some will produce a flower but none will look as striking as a rose groundcover!

Did you even know that there is such an option for your landscape? Well, there are some options for a rose groundcover that will work here in Indiana. From my research it looks like we might be at the northern most acceptable climate for these lovely groundcovers.

The sweet little apricot variety shown above grows from 1 to 2 feet tall and will spread about the same in width. Plant it in full to partial sun in an area where you need some fill but do not want a tall plant. The variety of rose groundcover like the Apricot Drift is disease resistant and likes a soil that drains well.

Once established your rose groundcover will start to bloom in the spring and provide lovely color throughout the summer months. You will even get a slight fragrance from these little beauties!

The blooms are what I would consider on the frilly side when fully bloomed out. I think the little roses would look lovely in a small little rose bowl when you cut them. Don’t you?

I didn’t find a huge variety of color when it comes to a rose groundcover. Pale apricot, peach, pink and a pale red was what I found. But, honestly any of those colors are going to look striking as a cover for the ground!

My concern would be our cold winters here in Indiana. I know in the past when I had regular roses I needed to cover them during the winter. I’m not sure how one would go about covering an area with ground cover that would be protective enough during the cold and snowy months that we get here.

Still, I think I would love to give this a try in the front yard where people could see it from the street. Perhaps my local landscape shop could advise me on what to do for winter months.