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#111910 June 26th, 2005 at 04:34 AM
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Well, in line with the advice of Longy, I"ve been keeping my eyes open for compostable stuff. So JUST NOW when I went out to my stock building, I noticed laying in the road was a nice big pile of HAY (or straw? I don"t know the difference) Anyway, at first I wondered if it was there ‘for a reason", but then figured it must have just fallen off the side of a truck…there were 2 more piles down the street, and in no way ‘placed" there on purpose.

Soooooo I grabbed my partner, handed her 2 rakes, and emptied my wheel barrow to make the trip to the corner LOL I packed the wheel barrow and brought it to my yard while poor Helen hung her head in shame LOL! I ended up with 5 wheel barrows full…and if the other 2 piles down the street are still there tomorrow, I"ll be going down with my SUV and a tarp. Yahoo!


So, here"s the question. How do I figure out if it"s straw or hay (what"s the difference) and, um…what do I do with it now? LOL! Thanks wink

Oh, and ya don't think it was stealing, do ya? I mean, if they dropped it off a truck...would they really come back to get it? I have no idea how much this stuff costs in big round bales, which is how it's sold here...I could never haul something that size, so this was an extremely nice surprise for me...yet I hate to think that I stole it. ters

#111911 June 26th, 2005 at 05:05 AM
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you know I don't even know the difference between them! lol sorry can't help ya there but I don't think it's stealing though and they probably won't be coming back to get it. they probably have PLENTY of it to spare :-) I have a question...what in the heck are those little weird letters that are appearing after some of your words?!

#111912 June 26th, 2005 at 05:34 AM
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OMG! LOL! I've been using word to type my posts - got into the habit when the forum was see-sawing a little, and I guess it didn't like the way it translated from word LOL Sorry. I do think all those weird things are apostrophies though. I'm typing this in my web browser (as you can tell).

I sure hope this stuff is good for something. I'm dripping with sweat...just came in from loading up the SUV two times...and it's in the upper 90s out there, with like 70% humidity. Think I'll go relax a minute and have a drink!

Oh, and thanks Jamie for not thinking it's stealing. The mayor stopped by our house - seeing the trail of hay from the street up our driveway LOL he thought it was us that left the mess. I told him I went out to clean some of it up since i needed it anyway...and he said he was going to find out who did it and yell at them to clean it up...but I told him not to worry - I would clean it up - and clean it up I did! LOL!

#111913 June 26th, 2005 at 05:40 AM
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oh ok lol! man I bet you are tired! yea it's pretty hot here too it really looks like it's going to rain...I hope it does because my plants need watering and I'm too lazy to get out and do it!! lol...the mayor stopped by?!! yea I'd gladly clean it up too if it was something that could be used lol! oh and I've heard that it can be used as good mulch too but don't take my word for it though...I could be wrong!

#111914 June 26th, 2005 at 05:43 AM
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Here's the scoop as I read it recently..

Straw = great mulch.

Hay = LOTS OF weed seeds.

I bought a bail of hay.. umm.. someone wanna take it from me, or perhaps help me figure out how to make a scarecrow? laugh

Meg

#111915 June 26th, 2005 at 05:57 AM
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Meg, I so don't want to hear that right now ters ters ters I'm sure this is hay...smells like alfalfa to me

Gotta be useful somehow! Onward, onward! I WILL find a use! LOL!

Yes, mayor stopped by...very, very, very (very) small town LOL! They were doing some work on a drainpipe in our yard, and he stopped by to see how it was coming along. wink

#111916 June 26th, 2005 at 06:10 AM
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Oh, Meg...can I ask how much your bale cost? Was it the big round one, or the little square one? Just wanted an idea of what it costs. Thanks! wink

#111917 June 26th, 2005 at 07:41 AM
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It was a square one, it was about $6.00

#111918 June 26th, 2005 at 07:45 AM
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Hey, thanks Meg. At least now I have a ballpark figure wink Yaknow, I was thinking (with help) that since I'm hot composting, it should (stress 'should') kill any weed seeds in that hay. If I can get the chook poo I should be able to get it hot enough so that they're good and fried - so I think I'm okay wink

#111919 June 26th, 2005 at 07:52 AM
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Quote
Originally posted by MaryReboakly:
So, here"s the question. How do I figure out if it"s straw or hay (what"s the difference) and, um…what do I do with it now? LOL! Thanks wink
ters
What color is it?

Hay is yellow.
Alfalfa is green.
And Clover is red.

If it is a big round bale it will not be straw. Straw is used for bedding.

#111920 June 26th, 2005 at 08:00 AM
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Welllll that's the thing, it was just laying in the street from having fallen out of someones truck, so I don't know how it was originally. While scooping, I saw some that looked like they may have been in square bales. It's yellow. Definitely hay. Kinda smells like alfalfa to me - is alfalfa hay still yellow? Thanks for the clarification wink

#111921 June 26th, 2005 at 08:14 AM
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Hey~Hay~Hey, Mary, did you know you can even plant in a bale of hay?? Get an old bale , cut one or two holes in the top, put in some garden dirt.
Stir it in, and down a wee~bit and plant a
tomato plant in it!!!

#111922 June 26th, 2005 at 08:25 AM
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Wha! whaddya know about that! Coolio...so, after halloween, ya hit up all the neighbors for their old bales wink Bet the stores part with them fairly cheap too! That's coolio weezie, thanks for the tip!

#111923 June 26th, 2005 at 08:40 AM
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Yep, keep it outside in the elements,
you want it to start looking like it's
ready for the compost pile...
And keep the strings on them...
Cut one hole in the middle or two~one on
either side of the middle...
Get some soil, garden and maybe some bagged
for variety..
Take your trowel, stir it in so it gets down
into the straw/hay pieces...
and put your tomatoes in, and you can even
shove in a stake and cage too!!!1

And if you do this, YOU'VE GOTTA TELL ME
HOW IT WENT.....
My husband won't let me do this little experiment. :p :p :p mad eek

#111924 June 26th, 2005 at 08:41 AM
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Oh yeah, when you're done planting
in it and it's starting to fall apart
then put it in your compost pile...

Works great cause it's already on it's
first stages of being broken down because
of sitting out in the elements and the
working of the root system thru the bale...

#111925 June 26th, 2005 at 08:55 AM
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Hey Weezie - I will definitely let you know how it goes - probably next year since I'll snag some bales this fall....but for now, I've got lots of lose hay:

[Linked Image]

What I'm wondering is if I should let it sit for a season and 'spoil', or if I should just use it straight away in my compost heap(s) or what. Figure if I can use it now, I'm set for browns all summer wink Whaddya think?

#111926 June 26th, 2005 at 09:19 AM
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I'd use it both ways..
Use some now if you need it,
and keep the pile out in the elements
so it can break down and use later...

Try covering some for even future use
down the road if you need it, then
that way, that stuff is still sort of dry!!!

YOU~LUCKY~LUCKY~DUCK YOU!!!!!!!!
We need a green gremalin for jealousy!!! p :p wink laugh

#111927 June 26th, 2005 at 09:36 AM
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Thanks Weezie - I was SO excited - pitching hay into the back of the SUV in this miserable heat - do I have to mention the neighbors that stood outside to watch me? Or the ones that drove by - twice? LOL!

Hmm not sure how to keep it completely out of the elements...not really anywhere 'inside' to put it. I think we might actually use a good deal of it quickly with my compost heap (HEAPS) going....we get so much green from mowing the grass that I could probably start 3 heaps at a time every time. I'll make it a contest, and see how much compost I can make by the end of grass mowing season! LOL! I'll make a sign that says 'welcome to my compost garden' LOL! thumbup grinnnn

#111928 June 26th, 2005 at 09:00 PM
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MaryReboakly :
That photo you posted looks like coastal bermuda hay. It is hay not straw like posted above hay is green straw is yellow. Even when dried out hay is not as yellow as straw. We have both the round and square bales here. We usualy bale Coastal in round and a lot of times we bale alphalpa in square bales.You can compoat them all if there are any weeds in the hay the heat will kill the seeds.
Hope this helps from an old hay farmer.

#111929 June 26th, 2005 at 09:59 PM
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Hey JV thanks! From the chunks I picked up, I think this stuff was in the square bales...just from the way they were situated on the ground it seems that was their 'original' shape. I also found a few strands of green string or straps I guess that's used to hold small bales together.

I've already started composting some of it. We got up at the crack of dawn today to get the yard mowed and I've got a 3-4' pile of hay/grass/hay/grass..etc. Waiting on the poop now to add to the middle of the pile. I hope I get it soon. If not, I've got plenty of hay left for when I do get it.

Thanks for your vote of confidence with the weed seeds too wink hope I get it hot enough to cook the h#ll out of em even if I don't get the poop soon! wink

#111930 June 27th, 2005 at 12:25 AM
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straw is mostly just stems too...hay has grass seed heads and leaves in it. Straw does come in the big round or square bales here. A small one of hay weighs about 600 lbs. We buy it by the ton as we have horses to feed. The little bales are about 40 to 80 lbs...depending on the type of hay. But most of it now is in the big bales now.

#111931 June 27th, 2005 at 10:04 AM
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wavey Hey garden palies,
just thought I'd add my 2 cents here.

I use wheat straw for mulching my vegetables and in my compost pile.Lots of it.I can't afford to water anything.

I'm in the heartland,so it's not that costly,about 3 dollars a bale.I'm hoping to get some free this fall from Halloween displays.

What I have learned is,if I leave it out during the winter,all the seeds in the hay won't sprout.

#111932 June 27th, 2005 at 10:12 AM
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Duckie! I'm in the heartland too - about 2 hrs south of St. Louis. In S. IL (Closer to Cape Girardeau) -- it's that cheap? Wow, great to know. Hopefully I can get some freebies this fall too, and will let them sit over the winter - I doubt I'll do much hot composting when it gets cold Brrrrr Wont wanna go out to the pile! Thanks for the tip wink

#111933 June 27th, 2005 at 10:41 AM
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Hi Mary, wavey nice to meetcha.

I made a mistake saying (hay)I meant straw.No way would I mulch with hay.

I applaud flw duckie


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