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Build Raised Garden Beds

Raised garden beds have many advantages. They look great, are easy to build, and give you more control over the soil. 

Planning

Before grabbing your tools, take a little time to plan.

Placement

Pick a spot with plenty of sun and easy access to water.

Size

Your space will most likely make this decision for you. If not, keep in mind how far you can reach, and how far you want to walk to get to the other side of the raised bed. A big advantage of raised beds is the soil stays soft because you aren't walking or leaning on it. I found 4' x 8' to be a great size.

Height

If you are going to use the existing soil in your raised bed, it doesn't need to be so tall. Think about the roots of your plants... 12 to 18 inches will give your plants plenty of room to grow.

MATERIALS

Now that you have your plan, it's time to get the materials.

Frame

The frame can be made out of just about anything: rocks, logs, bricks, lumber, etc. I chose to use landscape ties because they are inexpensive, durable, look good, and happen to be 8 feet long!

Soil

If you have good soil, you can use it in your raised beds. Otherwise, you can purchase soil. Before heading to the store to buy it one bag at a time, see if there is a landscape supply company nearby. I was able to buy a "loader full" and fill up my whole bed for a fraction of what it would have cost.

Watering

Do you have an existing sprinkler system? If so, you can replace the sprinkler head with a hose! Attach a regular hose to span from the sprinkler head to the raised bed, then a soaker hose to use in the raised bed.

Building

Going the extra mile during construction will ensure that your raised bed will last for years to come.

Use a 2x4 in each corner to help keep the bed square.

Use a "log cabin" technique for strength, and to stop the soil from leaching out.


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