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RE: Hay and Straw, was Re: sustainable companies

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Tipping Mar Associates has information and links for a straw bale home they were involved with.

From: Conrad Harrison [mailto:sch.tectonic(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Monday, November 19, 2007 4:53 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: RE: Hay and Straw, was Re: sustainable companies



The articles I have read indicated that hay is cattle feed, whilst straw is not. As Jim indicated hay contains more organics and is more prone to decay. I think it was meant to be nit picky. You wouldn’t use any kind of steel or timber for a structure, likewise the content of the bails of straw is important. Though my original statement was regards Richard Hess’s statement about a warning notice for hay fever: if it doesn’t contain hay then shouldn’t be a problem. Though hay fever doesn’t actually concern hay either. So it may be a problem of language, and clarifying concepts, as in the difference between lumber, timber, and wood.


Since you are from a farm and turned those grain producing grasses into straw, may be you can clarify the language for us. Did you feed the straw to the Dairy cattle?



Conrad Harrison

B.Tech (mfg & mech), MIIE, gradTIEAust



South Australia

From: Gary Loomis [mailto:gloomis(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Tuesday, 20 November 2007 00:40
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: RE: Hay and Straw, was Re: sustainable companies


A nit picky comment.  Straw is not from grass.  Straw is from a grain.  I grew up on a dairy farm and we grew oats and made straw from the stalks after the grain was removed.  The stalks were not cut until the grain had developed (ripened) at which time it was thrashed removing the grain from the stalk.  The stalk was then baled for straw.


The Bible says the fields are white for harvest.  That means the grain is mature and ready to be picked.


Gary W. Loomis, P.E., Senior Structural Engineering

Master Engineers and Designers, Inc.

-----Original Message-----
From: Jim Getaz [mailto:jgetaz(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Monday, November 19, 2007 9:01 AM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: Hay and Straw, was Re: sustainable companies


            Conrad Harrison wrote, “They are not supposed to be made from hay, just straw. Straw is mostly cellulose fibre, and apparently somewhat termite resistant. Hay as different characteristics and is undesirable in the bales.”

            I hope I’m not stating something everyone knows. Hay made from grass is cut green and includes the developing seed head. After grass has made its seeds and dried while standing in the field is cut and the seeds threshed out, the stems that are left is straw. It is gold in color, which is why Rumplestiltzkin could have his prisoner spin straw into gold. Properly stored hay retains a green hue and contains many more organics, which decay more easily than straw, undesirable in a structure.

            Jim Getaz

            Winchester, Virginia