Tutorial: Easy-Peasy Raised Beds

By fiwit
October 28, 2013

When I first moved into my house, I diligently dug flower beds by de-turfing the 20-year-old Zoysia grass and tilling up the red Georgia clay. Then one day I realized I could simply build raised beds, and it cut my bed-creation time in half. I can now build an 8ft by 16ft raised bed in about a day, and here's how I do it:

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Oct 27, 2013 7:59 PM CST
Name: Mary
My little patch of paradise (Zone 7b)
Gardening dilettante, that's me!
Plays in the sandbox Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Dog Lover Daylilies The WITWIT Badge
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Somehow I forgot to mention that once you've got the bed full of yard debris, cover it all with several layers of newspapers/cardboard before adding the soil.
Northwest Georgia Daylily Society
I'm going to retire and live off of my savings. Not sure what I'll do that second week.
My yard marches to the beat of a bohemian drummer...
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Oct 28, 2013 7:20 AM CST
Name: Kristi
east Texas pineywoods (Zone 8a)
Herbs Region: Texas Vegetable Grower Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Level 2
I have been doing these for growing vegetables for a few years now. As I add more compost and soil, I will add another layer of landscape timbers so the bed becomes taller and easier for me to work.

The only drawback I have found is tree roots (even from trees farther away) seem to find their way to the good soil and moisture. I have since been lining the bottoms of the bed with a weed cloth barrier.

Anyway, I concur ~ it is easy peasy and will recommend it highly. Thanks for sharing the idea!
Believe in yourself even when no one else will. ~ Sasquatch
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Oct 28, 2013 7:24 AM CST
Name: Mary
My little patch of paradise (Zone 7b)
Gardening dilettante, that's me!
Plays in the sandbox Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Dog Lover Daylilies The WITWIT Badge
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Bluebonnets Birds Region: Georgia Composter Garden Ideas: Master Level
It was my pleasure I tip my hat to you.
Northwest Georgia Daylily Society
I'm going to retire and live off of my savings. Not sure what I'll do that second week.
My yard marches to the beat of a bohemian drummer...
Image
Oct 29, 2013 5:54 PM CST
Name: Anna
North Texas (Zone 8a)
Charter ATP Member Clematis I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Texas Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Ideas: Level 1
so one layer on the grass and another over the twigs etc?
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Oct 29, 2013 6:00 PM CST
Name: Mary
My little patch of paradise (Zone 7b)
Gardening dilettante, that's me!
Plays in the sandbox Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Dog Lover Daylilies The WITWIT Badge
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Bluebonnets Birds Region: Georgia Composter Garden Ideas: Master Level
Nah...I just did the cardboard/newspaper as the very top layer of what I put in the bed. The grass and whatever weren't necessarily even throughout -- it was just wherever it landed when I tossed it in. I wound up with 2-3 inches of soil over the newspaper/cardboard, but the roots of the plants can push through the paper/cardboard and find plenty of room to grow deeper if they want. I have daylilies in my bed, and this is one that I bought in Feb, planted in the bed in late Feb/early March, and dug up to relocate in late May. I'm thinking it had no complaints about the soil only being 2-3 inches deep.

Thumb of 2013-10-29/fiwit/730be5 Thumb of 2013-10-29/fiwit/45478f Thumb of 2013-10-30/fiwit/72a155
Northwest Georgia Daylily Society
I'm going to retire and live off of my savings. Not sure what I'll do that second week.
My yard marches to the beat of a bohemian drummer...
Image
Mar 9, 2014 3:47 PM CST
Name: Mary
My little patch of paradise (Zone 7b)
Gardening dilettante, that's me!
Plays in the sandbox Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Dog Lover Daylilies The WITWIT Badge
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Bluebonnets Birds Region: Georgia Composter Garden Ideas: Master Level
canadanna said:so one layer on the grass and another over the twigs etc?


@Canadanna .... I was just re-reading this thread and the comments, and realized I might have misinterpreted your question when I answered it last fall.

If I have enough cardboard/newspaper, I will cover the ground before I start adding any kind of yard-waste to the bed, as a weed-blocker. Then, once the bed is full of yard-waste and I'm ready to add soil and plant in it, I cover the twigs, etc with newspaper/cardboard so that I have a platform of sorts to hold the soil. Otherwise, the soil would sift between all the yard-waste, and it would take more bags of it to fill the bed.
Northwest Georgia Daylily Society
I'm going to retire and live off of my savings. Not sure what I'll do that second week.
My yard marches to the beat of a bohemian drummer...
Image
Mar 11, 2014 8:36 PM CST
Name: Anna
North Texas (Zone 8a)
Charter ATP Member Clematis I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Texas Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Ideas: Level 1
Thanks for the clarification!
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Mar 11, 2014 9:14 PM CST
Name: Mary
My little patch of paradise (Zone 7b)
Gardening dilettante, that's me!
Plays in the sandbox Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Dog Lover Daylilies The WITWIT Badge
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Bluebonnets Birds Region: Georgia Composter Garden Ideas: Master Level
I tip my hat to you.
Northwest Georgia Daylily Society
I'm going to retire and live off of my savings. Not sure what I'll do that second week.
My yard marches to the beat of a bohemian drummer...
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