View Full Version : Need coveage estimates for bale of straw

01-27-2006, 04:55 PM
Estimating some lawn seedings and want an estimate for how much coverage I can get out of a 42"x24"x28" bale of straw. My calculations are saying around 300 square feet @ 1" thick. Of course these are calculations and not the real thing, does anyone have hands on experience with using a straw blower and the coverage they can get from that size bale of straw?

Thanks for any replies.

01-27-2006, 08:49 PM
You will get better coverage using a straw blower than shaking by hand. My minimum application rate, using a blower, is one bale per 1000 sqft. Anything less and you just dont get coverage. Hot weather and I will increase to 2 bales per M. For erosion control I dont use straw. A lot also depends on the size of the bales. I usually get good 40-50 lb bales but have gotten bales that weigh a lot less. Weight of the bale is more important than size. A large, loosely packed bale can weigh less than a smaller, tightly packed bale.

02-05-2006, 09:46 PM
It depends on how tight they bale it. I just count on 500 sf.

02-10-2006, 11:01 PM
I don't have any experience with a straw blower, but have A LOT of experience with baling the stuff. The coverage you will get is obviously in proportion to the amount of straw in the bale. The baler makes one size of bale, and depending on how tight you crank down the baler, you will have more or less straw in the bale. This # will defineatly vary from source to source for the straw. Where are you getting the straw from? If it is from a farm I know (I have worked w/ and for a bunch in the area, LOVE baling hay and straw) I could at least help you with a weight of bale maybe.

02-11-2006, 05:32 PM
an advrage bail will cover 300 sq. ft.

gammon landscaping
02-14-2006, 02:56 AM
now around here i find all kinds of straw. i have bought thoasands of bales over the past 3 years. if you get lowes/home depot straw it will ussually be very small and not cover much. and some farmers make short bales and long bales and tight and loose. so there is no way to say what the will cover but i think i can give you some ideas.

well if you are hand shaking some times you get good straw that has been combineded and it will shake apart very well and cover the ground very evenly and then some you get will be very long and seemed to be tied knots when you try to shake it will lump very baddly, it is the pita straw. now the good straw you can cover an acare 43,540(i think) with about 95-110 and the pita straw will take 120-130 and will be a very lumpy coverage. both of these being avarage bales not really tightly packed big bales or small loose

then if you are blowing straw the straw doesn't matter as much but it should take about 60-80 per acare

so hand shaking works out to around a bale to 350-500 sqft
and blowing a bale to around 750 sqft

this is just in my area as always thing are diff all over
and i do own a blower and blow alot of straw

02-14-2006, 07:07 PM
gammon, you didnt just call an agri metal a straw blower did ya??

Just kidding!!!

I think you hit the nail on the head. Coverage depends on the weight as well as the size of the bale. Those Lowes and Walmart bales are a ripoff. They sell them around here for $3.95 a bale. I can get good heavy bales at the local feed store for $4 a bale. Not much difference in price but a lot of difference in coverage. It will take two Lowes straw bales to cover what one of the good bales will cover. Good coverage is usually around 2-3000 lbs per acre with straw. Using 40 lb bales one should cover an acre with approx 50 bales as a minimum coverage and 75 bales will give you 3000 lbs per acre. Since the blowers chop the straw you will get better coverage blowing than with scattering by hand, simply because the clumps and lumps are eliminated.

Hay is actually a better mulch than the rye or wheat straw, has to do with the carbon/nitrogen ratio. Problem with hay is all the unwanted weed seeds, but for road bank seeding hay is usually cheaper, (at least in my area), as well as a better material to use since weeds are usually not a concern.

My blower

Stafford Landscaping
02-14-2006, 07:38 PM
When I blow straw I usually figure on about 2.5 bales per 1000sqft.
This give you about to 110 bales per acer. And I also add a few more
extra because some bales are packed a little tighter than others.

02-15-2006, 07:01 PM
If you hand shaker guys regularly spread lots of straw by hand, I think you can see the $$ savings in materials not to mention the labor savings of owning a blower , or at least renting one for large jobs.

BTW-Mudd, what is on that poor cats' head??LMAO:laugh:

02-15-2006, 07:09 PM
Just call me Melon head.:drinkup:

gammon landscaping
02-15-2006, 09:43 PM
hey mudd i like my agrimetal blower the fact that you can load whole bales in it and have 50 feet of hose to place the straw exactly were you want it. It is not the fastest as far as tons per hour but in tight new home const. the ones like your's are not feasable. if i were doing road sides and eroision control reach from nozel would be more of a factor. but for me proprer placement and good control are key to proper application.

not offended but very proud of my blower just spent two weeks going through it and painting the trailer

02-17-2006, 08:45 AM
Gammon, I was just teaseing ya, I looked at one myself before I bought the Yellow Jacket. My reason for going with the bigger machine was the distance that I could blow the straw and the rate it would blow it. I can get about 65 feet of good coverage from the turrent in still air, and depending on which way the wind blows, I have gotten close to 100ft. I can also attach a hose on the yellowjacket. I have used 100ft of 6in black flex for getting around houses. The machine handles the 100ft of hose with ease, blowing almost as far out the end of hose as it will the turrent. On road banks and wide area seeding I can easily get 100+ bales an hr thru the machine. It does take three people to keep the machine working, one driving the truck, one handleing the bales and one blowing. I do have the machine mounted on tracks on the trailer so I can roll it toward the front and load off the truck .

The yellow jacket is a bigger machine than the TGMI, Finn, or Bowie tailgate type mulchers. It has more hp, (25hp), and a bigger blower fan,(20inches). As best I can tell, the next stepup in a blower would be the Finn B70.

Pics of rails for rolling the machine.

03-04-2006, 02:25 AM
Since you guys are having this blower discussion let me ask this question:
Is there a PTO driven straw blower on the market? I did some searchs but didn't find anything.



03-04-2006, 09:33 AM
Yea, there are several pto driven blowers on the market. I am pretty sure Renico sells one and I think Finn also sales one, Haybuster sales some that will take the big 4x4 sq bales as well as the large roundbales. Vermeer might make one also. Do another search and just use strawblower for your search topic and see what comes up.

gammon landscaping
03-06-2006, 12:14 AM
i think i have seen some pics somewhere of maybe a finn?? anyway it was a big blower that is pulled by 100+ hp tractors and chopped big round bales. i think that it had a ramp on the back so that one bale kind of slid down and pushed the other bale in the chopper. but it was for big blowing apps. 100s of acres