Growing My Way? Think Inside the Box

We have been making a lot of progress in the company garden over the past few weeks. One of the biggest improvements is the addition of raised garden beds. Our garden will feature several types of raised beds, containers, and traditional garden beds.

Raised beds are a great way to create clean lines in the garden. In addition, they are perfect for less than ideal soil conditions and help keep pests at bay. Raised beds do take a little prep but not nearly as much work as traditional garden beds with poor soil.

Last week when we began installing the beds in our company garden I brought my camera along to capture every step to share with you.

The first step in building any raised bed is to clear the area. You will want to remove all the turf first and then break up the soil below for easier root penetration. It is also important to grade the area so that the bed sits level. 

Next you will want to dry fit the bed. We flipped our pegs upside down when doing this to get a better fit. Now is the time to step back and check positioning of the bed, making sure it is lined up straight and level. If your garden has rocky soil you will want to make sure the pegs can easily be hammered into the ground. There are also many bed designs such as the Gronomics® raised beds which sit on top of rocky soil.

After you are sure of your position you will want to pound the stakes or pegs into the soil to secure the bed. We did this with a hammer but a mallet would also work. This is also the time to place down landscape fabric or a weed barrier in the bottom of your bed if you wish to do so.
After all the stakes are secured then you are ready to fill the bed with soil. A good choice is a 50/50 mix of compost and topsoil. 

One bed down and lots more to go! After the raised beds we will be installing a deer fence from DeerBusters and the best part- planting all of our seedlings!

 

*All pictures are of the Frame It All 4×4 raised bed. If this bed doesn’t fit your size or design needs check out the extensive selection of raised beds on our site- MasterGardening.com

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4 Responses to “Growing My Way? Think Inside the Box”

  1. Carol Wilson
    May 18, 2011 at 11:26 am #

    Why can’t you place weedblock or landscape fabric below the bed to keep weeds and grass at bay? I’ve done this before and it works just fine. What are the cons of doing this?

    • May 18, 2011 at 12:12 pm #

      By all means you can put landscape fabric down below the bed or inside the bed. I would however wait until you have your final positioning and then place the weed barrier down. This way if you would like to adjust the bed you won’t struggling this the fabric also. I think placing the fabric inside the bed does a better job of containing your invasive plants. We planted mint in one bed where the fabric was below the bed and the mint spread out from under the frame within a season.

  2. Janet Bell
    May 18, 2011 at 12:27 pm #

    This would have been a perfect place to add 1 layer of cardboard or a thick layer of newspapers, wet down to stay in place. It would have went right on top of the grass, weeds, etc. to kill grass/weeds and encourage worms. Then you could have then gone with your compost and topsoil or started with layers of leaves and grass clippings. Just an idea.

  3. May 18, 2011 at 8:06 pm #

    Looking good!

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