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April 19, 2013 1:46 PM

Straw bale gardening has many benefits, creator says

When Joel Karsten was growing up on a farm in Minnesota, he noticed how lushly weeds grew from rotting bales of straw. That made him wonder: If straw worked so well for growing weeds, wouldn't it work just as well for vegetables? Karsten's question led him to devise a method for growing plants directly in straw bales. His idea is gaining momentum among gardeners with the recent release of his book,

Straw Bale Gardens

(Cool Springs Press, $19.99).

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