How to calculate how much hay is needed for garden mulch?
Is there a formula for calculating how much hay is needed to mulch a garden, ala' Ruth Stout method? i.e. X number of bales of hay to mulch 100 sq. ft. of garden to a depth of 12 inches. Or X number of lbs. of hay per 100 sq. ft. Or something like that.
I seem to recall something about this, but can't remember where or what the formula was.
How much hay is needed to mulch a garden?
That free spirit, Ruth Stout back in the 1950s onwards, used to say roughly ½ ton of loose hay or 25 x 50lb bales will cover 50ft x 50ft of garden. This mulch covers the garden to a depth of 8 inches.
Back in Ruth Stout's day, mulch materials were easier to come by due to a more rural community. Most backyard gardeners nowadays don't need, or would pay a small fortune for 25 bales of hay, straw, lucerne or pea straw or other mulch material.
So a more realistic easy formula is 1 bale of hay, broken apart into pads, will easily cover a garden bed 1m x 2m.
Ruth Stout used to just toss just about anything organic onto her garden wherever she found a bare patch or a few weeds growing. She used kitchen rubbish/garbage underneath, then seaweed, any and all leaves, pine needles, sawdust, old weeds, stalks and twiggy bits, and of course straw and hay. Anything that rotted was fodder for her garden mulch.
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