Time to build some new raised beds!
Thursday, 02 Aug 12 Storms 38°C / 100°F
The boards holding in my vegetable garden soil have started rotting, cracking along their length, releasing their screws, and toppling over. This bed was built by the previous owners of our home, and I think that it served well for quite a while. I was certainly happy to have it there when we moved in!
But a significant part of the back of the bed (north-ish) is now shaded by an elm tree, roots from the elm and other trees along our back fence have infiltrated the bed, and the section along the fence (west-ish) is shaded every afternoon. Also, because the current design consists of one large raised bed, I walk on precious soil, and my rows are closely packed in order to maximize use of the soil. And, oddly, the soil in my garden (unless the surface is covered with a 2+ inch layer of compost or mulch) seems to have water-repellent properties, which means that water runs off of the beds and into the mulched paths and makes thorough watering more challenging and time-consuming.
So the time has come to build a new vegetable garden. And for the reasons above, I’m planning a completely new design instead of a simple replacement of the rotted boards.
- Instead of one large 18.5′ × 20′ bed, my plan is to split the main vegetable garden into four 4′ × 20′ beds.
- The main vegetable garden will be shifted several feet away from the fence, and several feet farther forward of the tree-filled back of the yard, in order to reduce shading from fence and trees.
- There will be 3-foot-wide ground-level paths in between the beds, to allow for more space between plants in different beds, to reduce shading of one crop by another, and to increase air circulation (to hopefully reduce foliage fungal problems). Having the paths at ground level will also help to protect me from fire ants, which love the raised areas in my yard.
- Addition of a new 4′ × 10′ raised vegetable bed on the other side of the backyard, parallel to the blackberry bed.
- Addition of two 4′ × 4′ raised beds along the fence, in front of the vegetable garden, to grow native passion fruit vines. I’ve cut down the Asian Wisteria plant that was growing there, but still need to dig up its roots.
Photo #1: The current vegetable garden, mostly cleared of plants in preparation for the garden redesign project.
Photo #2: The space in front of the blackberry bed where the new 4′ × 10′ vegetable bed is set to go.
Photo #3: The lumber that DH and I hand-picked at Southern Lumber and Millwork (which had much higher quality lumber than Lowes, at only a slightly higher price, and with free delivery), in our garage, ready to be cut down to size!
This entry is about
Blackberry 'Ouachita' Growing, Blackberry 'Natchez' Growing, Elkhorn fern Growing, Hydrangea (sma...
Blueberry 'Premier' (#1 closest to house) Growing, Blueberry 'Tifblue' (#2 second closest to hous...
Meyer Lemon Tree Under Attack and Meyer Lemon Tree Growing
Kale 'Starbor' Growing, Garlic - Saved from summer harvest Growing, Cilantro 'Caribe' Growing, Sp...
Pak choi 'Brisk Green' Harvesting and Lettuce 'Matina Sweet' Harvesting
Kale 'Dinosaur' Planting Out, Broccoli Planting Out, Artichoke 'Green Globe Improved' Growing, Me...