I think I’ve got a definite winner in the hay bale garden versus the straw bale garden debate. The hay bales have done much better all around than the straw bales have done. I don’t know if that means there are more nutrients in hay than in straw as the bales break down or if it simply in my choice of plants for each garden. All I know is that I had to fertilize the straw bales more often and except for the zucchini and green bean foliage, nothing ever did super well, stuff only did adequate or failed in the straw bales. Also the hay bales have produced about five weeds and the straw bales have produced dozens. Kohlrabi didn’t do great in either garden.
I suppose for it to be totally fair I would have needed to start each garden at the same time and grown the same types of vegetables in each one and grown them in the same area of the yard. But honestly, the straw bales were in the prime area. They had all of the advantages. So I think next year if I do this again, it’ll be hay bales all the way.