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.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

scoping out sizes of new raised beds

043 - scoping out sizes of new raised beds My husband and son carried the wood that will edge my new raised beds down to the site of my new garden. We then laid out a few pieces to see how the beds will look. My plan has six 4x12 foot beds and two 6x15 foot beds.



Blogger Sunny Smiles said...

We have moved recently from CA. to Oregon. It will be a while before we can get started on our back yard. We hope to have raised beds..

March 26, 2014 3:59 PM

Anonymous Ralph said...

Four feet wide is the width I find best, too, with paths about a foot wide.

For paths, I've always liked untreated wood chips because they deter slugs (in dry weather), are biodegradable, and comfortable to walk on.

My wife prefers grass and clover on walkways, which she started introducing about two years ago; at first I was skeptical, but I think she might actually have the better solution. Wood chips tend to vanish while grass sticks around--you just have to use a scythe or weed whacker to keep it at the right height.

March 27, 2014 5:28 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

We have 16 raised beds on our allotment in the UK. All of ours are just 4 feet wide with varied lengths. There are two reasons for this width. 1) you can easily reach into the middle of the bed from either side, which in turn means that 2) you will not need to walk on the raised bed which will really improve the soil quality.
Our beds are really productive and easy to manage. Good luck with yours.
Simon, York, UK

March 27, 2014 11:58 AM

Blogger Goneferal inidaho said...

We are planning our raised bed garden at our new house. Four feet wide worked great at our last place.

March 27, 2014 8:08 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excellent! I have been gardening in raised beds for 20 years and have six beds, 4x16 feet each. They are hemlock and my husband had to replace them once in the 20 years. Be sure to put a plastic barrier down. I use salt marsh or other weed free hay as mulch. One thing I have learned just this year is that all my fertilizers and soil additives over the years have seriously depleted the minerals. You'll know this is the case when the beets won't form! At the suggestion of a local farmer, I'm adding a product called "Cheep Cheep" chicken manure this year along with a lot of rich compost. Betsy

March 28, 2014 5:14 PM

Blogger kathy said...

YES! 4 foot wide beds and lots of chicken manure! Me too.

But I'm also putting in a couple 6 foot wide beds. I've gardened in 4 foot beds for the past 20 years and they're super for everything EXCEPT potatoes and corn. And I love to grow potatoes and popcorn.

There are lots of ways to make use of raised beds. I like to lay boards across the beds and use these to work the plot. Most of my plantings are in 'patches' separated by these cross boards. I can walk across the bed on the boards and can work the soil from them. This allows me to make use of wider beds.


Not sure why I would add a plastic barrier, though I haven't done my soil test yet. If there's a toxicity I'll add plastic, but I'm only expecting compacted soil. Once I get some microbes going in the beds, they'll loosen and mix the lower soil. I can remove pebbles/rocks as they mix upwards. Why do you suggest a barrier?

Cheep Cheep sounds great! I have 3 hens busy pooping!

March 29, 2014 12:01 AM


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