Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Raised Bed: Finished!

Finally some pictures of the raised bed I built! Made completely from scrap wood from the discard pile when a friend's house was being built. It was kind of fun trying to piece together the odd sizes like a puzzle to create a strong wall that can hold in all the dirt about to be put inside. It took me a day to build this, taking a two-hour break to make lunch for the kids and waiting for Andrew to get home with more screws for me. This was all me: no plans, no help, just me and my power tools.

This is the back wall, made of all the smaller bits and once the dirt is inside, you'll never see this "patchwork" of wood boards. Before I shoveled in the dirt, I stapled in a lining all around the inside of the frame, so I won't have to worry about chemicals leeching into the dirt/plants from the treated wood.

 I made it pretty high. I debated this internally for quite a while before I went ahead and made it high.  I could have made two raised beds, but I really wanted to have a bit of area where I wouldn't have to bend over at all. Since the rhubarb will be transplanted here, it would be really nice not to bend over to harvest or maintain the plants.

I saved the longest boards for the front and the ends, and there are 2x4s all along the inside for support. I tried to piece it all together without having to cut anything, because really, sawing is a pain in the a$$. I only needed to cut 3 or 4 pieces and I used the reciprocating saw for that. I was lucky that many of the boards were the same size, which pretty much determined how wide the frame was going to be. Those boards on the ends and the short end were all the same size. Eventually, I want to paint it, either a green or blue background and then let the kids go wild and request painted flowers all over.

Couldn't resist a pix of my cuties perched on the frame!

Here it is, all filled up with composted cow manure.  It took nearly two truckloads of dirt to fill this up and I'm really happy with it!  I waited too long to transplant the rhubarb, so I'll wait until next spring and dig them up while they're dormant.  In the meantime, I'm going to go ahead and plant broccoli here, using a row cover for the first time, hoping this will be the year I finally get to harvest some before the bugs get to it!  I'm thinking of also planting a permanent spot of asparagus in the shorter end of the bed.  Any thoughts about asparagus and rhubarb growing close together?

So glad to check this project off my list!

Next post: The Chicken Coop Fence and Gate!


barefoot gardener said...

Yay! Looks good. Isn't it fun to get your groove on with power tools? lol...

Stephanie D said...

Very clever! I don't have any power tools, so I cheated and bought two kits from Home Depot and stacked them up. Can't believe how much soil it took to fill it, and it's only 4'x4'. Since I'm a beginning gardener, I'm not attempting anything like asparagus or rhubarb. Will be watching to see how yours do!