The following are some advantages and disadvantages for using straw or hay as mulch. Based on your own knowldege and experience, feel free to add to this list.
- straw is the leftover stem portion of harvested grain. Hay is the stem portion of grasses and is often confused with straw.
- both straw and hay are good plant nutrients (pro)
- both straw and hey work well in the vegetable garden where weeds can easily be pulled (pro)
- straw makes a good cover for newly-seeded lawn areas (pro)
- staw is lightweight and therefore not always easy to apply (con)
- straw tends to blow around (con)
- straw decomposes quickly and therefore needs replacing more often than other mulches (con)
- straw ppearance may not make it a top choice for the landscape (con)
- hay is likely to contain weed seeds, so use it with caution (con)