This is a journal of my vegetable gardens. Skippy was my first dog and he thought the garden was his, even though I did all the work. Now Suzie and Charley follow in his footsteps. We're located near Boston (USDA zone 6A). I have a community plot, a backyard vegetable garden, fruit trees, berry bushes, chickens, and bees. I use sustainable organic methods and do my best to grow all of my family's vegetables myself.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

a new raised bed

Copy of IMG_6685
Copy of IMG_6669 Copy of IMG_6668
Copy of IMG_6683 dump truck

My husband made a big new raised bed in the sunny spot next to our house. The soil was contaminated here so he removed 6 inches, built the bed, spread plastic and added new soil. The bed is 14 to 16 inches deep. About 8 by 10 feet. He recently added a board as a bridge/walkway and to reinforce the tall sides. Its not in these photos here.

We'll see how it is to work in such a wide bed. I'll add more boards as pathways. I'm looking forward to growing tomatoes, cucumbers and basil here!



Blogger Ann said...

Don't get too excited ab out 81° today, remember, we live in New England - don't like the weather? Wait a bit!

I actually thought we've had a good spring so far, except for the last few days, after a good long snow covered winter. No heaved plants, they all look good, now if it would just get back to Spring we'll be all set!

April 28, 2009 3:21 PM

Blogger kathy said...

The forecast says we'll see a high of 90 tomorrow and a low of 43 in the next few days. Quite a range!

My plants all did well over the long winter too. That is good.

April 28, 2009 3:33 PM

Anonymous Dawnie (CT) said...

Very NICE!!

April 28, 2009 3:43 PM

Blogger Dan said...

Nice new raised bed. All my beds are joint together so I have to break the cardinal rule of not stepping on the soil as well. The boards are a good idea, I should get some.

I am hoping to have my dump truck of rich earth arrive by this weekend. Not looking forward to the work though.

April 28, 2009 8:42 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love this blog - can you please tell me what kind of soil you got for the bed and where from it was delivered? Thank you!

April 29, 2009 9:27 AM

Anonymous Somerville Gardener said...

What sort of plastic do you have lining the bottom? I "inherited" a raised bed from my house's previous residents, and it is likewise lined with plastic over contaminated ground. But the plastic is impervious, and the raised bed has been getting soggy due to lack of drainage. How does yours work, drainage-wise?

April 29, 2009 12:20 PM

Blogger chicago dyke said...

"contaminated?" wow. i've never had to deal with that. it sounds harsh.

i took out the east bed next to my house, two seasons ago. it was covered with fern, english ivy, and lilly of the valley. which i love, but it was too sunny and close to waste on common shade cultivars. i had blah-blah yards of dirt laid over them. i covered the bed with landscaper cloth for the winter, over an inch of collected leaf matter.

the next season i put my herb garden there. no ivy! only a few ferns, some LoVs. but on the whole, managable, and sunny. all my herbs did well. this year, i don't think i'll have anything from the old bed.

i can't imagine what it would be like to do 8-12" raised beds. all my raised beds are open on the bottom. what is so bad in your space that you need to cover it with plastic?

May 02, 2009 5:09 AM

Blogger Michelle said...

How long did it take him to make from the time that he said he'd make it?

The reason I'm asking is because of my dad. I'm moving out in a few months (I'm 18) and he "Promised" he'd make me 3 or so raised beds and I'm wondering how long it'll take him!

January 17, 2010 4:25 PM

Blogger kathy said...

I don't know Michelle. He CAN do it in a day. Its just a matter of finding the time.....

It took my husband 2 days to build and fill this bed. I think he said he'd do it about 2 weeks before he found the time to do it.

He went out to Home Depot early on a Saturday and bought wood. Then assembled the bed that day. I had ordered a truckload of loam to be delivered later in the day. My son and husband spent the next day moving the loam with a wheel barrow to the bed. (I can't remember why I didn't help. There must have been a good reason.)

I think you should probably bribe him. Like tell him you will make him lunch or whatever he likes (pumpkin bread would work for my dad). Serve beverages. And promise to share vegetables with him.

January 17, 2010 8:49 PM

Blogger kathy said...

I see I forgot to answer a question earlier about where I got the soil to fill the bed. I just bought "rich loam" from a place on Concord Ave in Cambridge MA. They delivered 3 cubic yards. This soil is OK but will benefit from added manure and compost.

January 17, 2010 9:03 PM


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