Monday, March 5, 2018

Build a pine-straw baler

A pine-straw baler made from scrap lumber 
Our neighbor Tim had this apparatus in his front yard. We wondered what the heck it was. Tim has a lot of big pine trees on his property, which, of course, generate a lot of pine needles. So he'd built this pine-straw baling machine out of scrap lumber he had on hand.

In its resting position, the lever arm is folded back and resting on the ground. Attached to the lever are 2 other arms bolted in place so that they can swivel in relation to the level arm. The first arm has a square attached to its end and this is what exerts pressure on the pine needles that are in the chamber. The second arm is used to pull down the lever arm into position.

The second arm is a handle to reach the lever arm, while the first arm exerts pressure on the pine needles in the chamber. Push down on the end of the lever arm for the most pressure.
So to create your bale, first lay the strings across the bottom of the chamber and up and over the back side across to and up and over the door side. Secure the door shut and then add the pine needles (or hay of any kind really) into the chamber. When it reaches the top, use the arms to squash down the needles. Then tie the strings across the top of the bale. Open the door and remove it.

Build a door that latches securely so it can withstand the pressure, but can open up to remove the finished bale. Ta-da! A finished bale tied up with string

I hope you have found interesting ways to use your scrap materials around your landscape. How sustainable!

Green Gardening Matters,
Ginny Stibolt

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