As an old farm girl (think 1950's and 60's!) I can't help but explain that straw is NOT the bottom half of hay stalks but it IS the lower part of wheat after it is harvested. Thus the beautiful golden color and the mostly empty pods on the heads of each "straw". I too have lots of it in my garden and the potatoes are doing very nicely in the 3 ft high pile of straw in which the row is growing. Can't wait until it's time to harvest them!