Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Homestead Tips on Tuesday: DIY Raised Garden Bed


Gardening is a homesteading staple activity, but before you can start that garden, you have to be ready to plant. Let me tell you, there is a lot to do to get ready to plant. From seeds to compost it can quickly become overwhelming, so we are going to start at the VERY beginning…. The garden bed. Sure you could just plant directly in your yard, but don’t! Trust me on this one boys and girls, you want to make some raised garden beds. What you fill them with (dirt, compost, etc) will make the difference between a sad little garden and something to be proud of.

I did research on the different types of pressure treated woods in the market today and then compared how long treated vs. untreated wood would last, blah, blah, blah and for my money vs. risk and all that “stuff” we decided to go with pressure treated. The wood we bought contain copper and a fungicide but no arsenic. The copper keeps insects at bay, and the fungicide prevents soil fungus from attacking the wood. I feel comfortable with the choice we made. I mean honestly, compared to the food people buy in the store, and who knows what's on (or in) it!?!?! I feel totally comfortable with the extreme remote chance of leaching from the wood I bought. You buy what you feel comfortable with and your budget allows.

You can either buy the boards in 6 foot lengths or cut down longer boards as we did. I got a super duper circular saw for Mother's Day a few years back and it made sizing all the lumber fast and easy. I used 2x6 (2 inch thick and 6 inches tall) lumber but if you want to go taller, by all means, knock your socks off! But remember to adjust the length of your 4 corner posts. My corner post are made from a 4x4 which will make them super strong and they were really easy to drill screws in (like shooting a penny at the broad side of a barn!)


Once all our wood was cut to size (which we did all of them before we started so we could knock them out assembly line style) we laid out each bed with all its parts. We used the deck screws to put each bed together. We used four screws per corner, two on each (for a total of 16 per bed.) We were going to pre-drill the holes but it was just faster to put them in, again we were aiming at a LARGE target so it wasn't like we were going to miss and split a board.

I love how easy these were to make. And I think they look beautiful!! I mean I have no carpentry skills and I pulled it off, so why not give it a try. I even made a split two level one!!! I promise these will make your yard beautiful, your garden easier to manage and best of all you can take pride in them and say, yup, I made that!

 

**Homestead Tips on Tuesday is a weekly series where we help you learn skills, tips, and trick to help you on your journey of homesteading. Many places post list of things you should/could do as far as homesteading skill, but I feel lists are at times overwhelming and can make people give up before they even start. So every Tuesday I share one thing for you to try or consider. I hope you join us every Tuesday and I would love to hear about your adventures with each weeks topic.**


38 comments:

  1. I am fairly new to your blog. I retired last year and I plan on making a garden this year. Thank you and please keep posting these tips because I have no idea what I am doing.

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    1. LOL Welcome to the club. We learn by doing around here, so get your hands dirty!

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  2. I've debated about these for a couple years now. We have really great soil so I've been gardening the "old fashioned" way but these look so pretty and it seems it would be a great way to keep the weeds at bay.

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    1. We did not have good soil, at all! LOL And it does help with weeds. We lined the bottom with pizza boxes befor adding soil and compost. MUCH easier to keep the weeds out.

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  3. I really want to do something similar to this not this coming spring but the next. We have a massive back deck (1500sq ft) that makes for a wonderful flat area and a dog free zone. My dream is to build raised type beds along the railing for my garden. Figured that would be the best spot, away from the dogs, lots of sun, on erosion because of our steep grade and it'll make it pretty.

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    1. Just keep in mind, some plants don't like a lot of sun. It sounds like it will be beautiful :)

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  4. Awesome! I am pinning this and sending it to my husband to build for me. Now I just have to figure a way to keep the dogs and bunnies out!

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    1. LOL We had the same problem with children and poultry. Our ducks walked all over our corn plants! We are putting in a fence cutting off that area of the yard this year.

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  5. Ooh, oooh, share this one, too, at Green Thumb Thursday! http://homesteadlady.com/green-thumb-thursday-21314/

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  6. You will love these! We built four 4' x 8' raised gardens a few years ago and they are perfect. Your plant beds caught my eye over at the Wake Up Wednesday Party!
    Marie @ The Interior Frugalista

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    1. I do love my raised garden beds... oh I do!

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  7. Raised bed are the only way! We love ours, it's so much easier to plant seeds!

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  8. I combined raised beds with square foot gardening - due to back issues, made my beds 3 ft by 3ft, and then placed my boxes about 3-4 ft apart. Worked great! Along one fence line we added in a raised bed too, 2 ft wide and about 8 ft long or so. You can still get quite a bit of stuff growing along that too :) Thanks for linking to Turn it up Tuesday!

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    1. I love how with beds you can tuck them all over your yard, in every nook and unused area. Because lets face it, not all plants like the same conditions!

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  9. I put in raised beds last year. And I want more. Garlic already up. Can't wait to start with everything else.

    Yael from Home Garden Diggers

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  10. Awesome ideas! I'm ready to start planting : ) Stopping by from the simple Saturday blog hop : )

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  11. I'm expanding my garden this year, so this is timely. :-) Thank you for sharing this at the HomeAcre Hop; I hope you'll join us again this Thursday.
    Kathi at Oak Hill Homestead

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    1. Your going to love them. They make the garden so cute! Happy planting :D

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  12. We love to garden with raised beds. Our weather has been offal the past few years with high drought conditions, so we have been on water restrictions. I hope it rains more and we get back to normal. I miss having a nice garden. Love your project. Thanks for sharing at My Favorite Things party Theresa @DearCreatives

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    1. Oh I hope you get rain!!! *fingers crossed*

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  13. Just stopping by to thank you for linking up to Freedom Fridays - and to let you know that you are being featured at tonight's party! It goes live at 8:30 pm EST - we can't wait to see what you share this week!

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  14. Thanks for linking up at Fabulously Frugal Thursday. Your post is being featured on this week’s party.

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  15. Oh thank you! We have been talking about doing this for a few years. I am pinning then sending to my husband for him to build this spring.

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    1. They really are easy to make.... now getting the lumber home... that was a slight challenge LOL

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  16. Just did my two raised beds last week. Ten inches tall, 10x10 with a 2' walkway up the middle. That made the bed 4' wide all the way around. Two friends from a farm girl site I am on came and helped build them. (hubby is out of state working) I found the design online and posted on our site and said I have always wanted raised beds! They popped up and said lets do it!! I got the treated lumber and had some 4x4 already. Plan is to build at least two more along the back of the garden spot. For those I have ordered two bundles of rough cut cedar that are outside cuts. Plenty in one bundle to build two beds. Now, what to build with the other bundle???

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    1. Hmmmmm Oh the possibilities! LOL Chicken coop???

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  17. Thanks for the tips, Mindie! Another thing that’s good about having a raised garden bed is that you can control the spread of weeds that can be pests to the nursery, especially if you are planning to plant herbs. This is really helpful.

    Bethel Woodard

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