Tuesday, March 9, 2010

How to build a great garden

Spring has sprung early in coastal BC and so to get a jump on the garden (before it gets a jump on us) we decided to spend the last couple of weekends up at the cabin clearing out the brambles and cutting back overgrowth. Fun stuff you say? Actually, it is and I quite enjoy it. This is the first time since childhood that I've had a yard so I'm excited to get my hands dirty and work a little green thumb.
I thought I'd share with you a great tutorial on how to build a raised bed for your garden.

soon to be filled with yummy tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, cucumbers...

We decided to build raised veggie beds for a couple of reasons. When we started tilling we realized the bedrock was less than a foot under the topsoil in some places. Another reason is that raised beds are a little less back breaking to work in (and they look pretty). We followed the design on Sunset.com, with a couple minor adjustments.

- We used spruce instead of cedar. Though not as durable, spruce still weathers well and is half the cost of cedar. We were offered pressure treated wood for its durability but swiftly turned it down. An organic veggie garden isn't very organic if chemicals are leaching into it.
- We used landscape fabric instead of the hardware cloth recommended on the website. Our area generally doesn't have a problem with burrowers and the fabric is more than enough to keep out pesky weeds. It's also a fraction of the cost of the hardware cloth.

To build both frames for the beds only took us a couple of hours, plus another hour to dig the holes for the posts and attach the pvc piping for the bird netting. It ended up costing a total of 180.00 for materials, but considering we'll make that up and more in groceries I'd say it's well worth the effort.

1 comment:

lesley [smidgebox] said...

awesome! i wish we had a space for some beds, we'll be trying our hand at some potted veggies this year.
can't wait to see some produce sprouting there!