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Ideas for the tough yard



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 Raised Beds
Joe
Posted: Feb 13 2006, 05:43 PM
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I stumbled upon your pages. Is there
anyway I could get plans for your raised beds. I am gearing up to start
some gardening in my backyard. My soil is nonexistent, so I am planning
on starting with some raised beds.
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stone
Posted: Feb 13 2006, 07:11 PM
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Hey Joe,

I've been entertaining the thought of doing a page on raised bed construction, I just don't have the pictures.

I build these raised beds with 2 x 4 lumber. So, The directions would be to buy lumber the length that you wanted the bed to be. Buy extra.

Cut material to the width desired. I used 42 inch wide raised beds because I was building for retired people, and that was as far as they cared to reach (for weeding).
I use 3" screws to hold the sections together...I use a battery operated drill to drive them in...Get the best drill that you can afford.
One layer is 4 sticks of wood. put the short pieces on either end of a long 2 x 4, like building a wall.....screw them together. turn the piece over, screw the other long piece on. Then....Make a spot to lay that section down, use a level; the bottom needs to lay level. Use a square to be sure that the corners are square as well. Build the other sections, stack them on, screw them down into the previous layers.
As you can see from the pictures, they are 6 or 7 layers high.
user posted image user posted image



Now you need to make anchors. Sharpen some 2 x 4 pieces using a circular saw or a chainsaw. Use a sledge hammer and drive them into the corners (inside of the box) also drive a couple in the middle of the long sections. screw the layers to the stakes, use a chainsaw to cut the stakes off level with the top.

Final layer should be 2 x 6 lumber lay it flat for a seat. screw it together....fill with the best soil you can find after thoroughly working the soil in the bottom of the box.

Boxes should be minimum of 3 1/2 feet apart...Gotta get the wheel barrow through.

Tools needed for project: chainsaw, circular saw, square, level, pencil, battery operated drill, sledge hammer.

Parts needed: 1 pound (or so) 3 inch screws, 2 x 4 lumber, 2 x 6 lumber, stain (you should stain the lumber before begining to build), paint brush.

How to make soil: http://www.stonethegardener.com/soil.html

I sure hope this helps, I'm going to use it as a first draft for my how to: page...so you helped me by asking.

Write back if you need more help, be sure to let me know how your beds turn out!


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earthangel
Posted: Mar 26 2008, 10:46 AM
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Hi, Stone and Joe. Like Joe, I stumbled across your pages as I searched for ideas for raised beds. I gardened in the same place for 21 years and have now moved to another house with actually better siting for the veg garden. I want to use raised beds, want to try to make them seating height, and need to use them to address a drainage problem. I have been researching materials, looked at cypress yesterday, and have some cost limitations. I noticed that your bed instructions use 2x4 lumber. What kind did you use? Also do you know if the new treated lumber is any better than the old arsenic treated lumber for vegs, or is my gut right and I want to still use untreated? Your beds look like what I'd envisioned and the directions are really clear, getting to some procedural questions I had. I'm ready to go, except I can't figure out what to use that I can afford and will be reasonably long lasting and will not poison us or our land. Any ideas would be appreciated. Thanks!
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stone
Posted: Mar 26 2008, 06:05 PM
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I'd trust my gut.

They have great commercials, but...

These beds are built from regular fir 2 x 4s. I put a coat of behr wood stain on them and put them together.

I've replaced one board in 5-6? years. I've seen treated wood do less well. I damaged the inside of the board when working the soil. (You don't want to do that)

If you can afford cedar or cypress, that would certainly be the way to go...

Just be sure that you leave enough room to get a wheel-barrow between them comfortably. There's nothing worse than permanent beds that have been built too close together... And it's a common mistake.


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stone
Posted: May 6 2008, 06:22 AM
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Barbara wrote:
What happens if you use all creosote lumber for a enclosed vegetable garden?
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creosote is pretty rough stuff. It burns if you get it on your skin, which means that every time that you try to garden in your bed, you'll get creosote burns.

creosote kills plants, you're going to have a hard time growing anything.

creosote contains stuff like arsenic which is taken up by the plants, and enters your system and degrades your health.

I wouldn't use creosote for my vegetables.

More information:
http://waterquality.montana.edu/docs/wqfaq.../wq_faq_3.shtml


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heavens
Posted: Feb 3 2011, 02:26 AM
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QUOTE (Joe @ Feb 13 2006, 05:43 PM)
I stumbled upon your pages. Is there
anyway I could get plans for your raised beds. I am gearing up to start
some gardening in my backyard. My soil is nonexistent, so I am planning
on starting with some raised beds.

A raised bed is most productive and attractive as a bottomless frame set into a shallow trench. The sides can be almost any durable building material, including rock, brick, concrete and interlocking blocks. Watering troughs or claw-foot tubs can work, as long as they have the capacity and drainage.

On the other hand, if you do not have a good soil you can mix and match compost, mulch and coir to create a nice soil mix for raised beds. Just keep the organic matter (manure and/or compost) high, and plants will be vigorous and healthy.


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stone
Posted: Feb 5 2011, 10:00 AM
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QUOTE (heavens @ Feb 3 2011, 02:26 AM)

A raised bed is most productive and attractive as a bottomless frame set into a shallow trench. The sides can be almost any durable building material, including rock, brick, concrete and interlocking blocks. Watering troughs or claw-foot tubs can work, as long as they have the capacity and drainage.

I'm having a difficult time figuring out what to make of your posts...

If you have any experience with any of the projects that you've been commenting on, tell us specifics.

If you are merely repeating information that you read somewhere, it isn't really helpful, and I'm going to start deleting.

Maybe have a look at my spam policy especially visit the link on added value.

I created this forum to discuss actual experience, and your posts smell of theory, rather than getting your hands dirty and your boots muddy.


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