Newly dug out holes in the straw bales for my tomato plants. I could not dig these! A strong man did. I tried, but it was impossible. Wet straw composting doesn’t cut easy. No one tells you this on straw bale “how to” sites. I found only one person on the web telling it l like it is-There is one blog that told how hard it was to make the holes in wet straw-http://mostuncivilizedadventure.blogspot.com/2010/05/straw-bale-gardening.html
This blog “most uncivilizedadventure” shows two guys with a soil auger as they stand on top of the straw bale. The moral to the story is to cut the holes BEFORE you start wetting down the bales. Cut into the straw bales when they are dry if you are going to pursue straw bale gardening!!