If you are starting out in backyard gardening like I am, you may find it difficult to figure out what kinds of materials you need and where to get them. I know I have.
To this point, all of my raised bed gardens have been bare dirt. I know this isn’t optimal; I have read up on all the garden blogs that say you desperately need to mulch your gardens for the following reasons:
Mulch keeps the soil temperature more even (warmer in winter months and cooler in summer months)
Mulch helps retain moisture in the soil
Mulch keeps weeds from being able to germinate
Mulch adds nutrients back into the soil as it decomposes
But I was faced with the challenge of what to use for mulch. All of the mulch I see in stores is meant to put around landscaping, not raised vegetable beds. A search online yielded tons of blog posts singing the praises of grass clippings and dried leaves. But you see, I live in an area that is going through a severe drought. I don’t have a lawn to be able to use grass clippings. I don’t have that many trees to be able to use dead leaves. The trees I do have are Eucalyptus and Peppercorn, neither of which would be good for use in a garden. So it seems my best, most responsible option is to use straw.
En 60 jours, il est passé de quelques graines à un potager bio hyper productif en permaculture
Par Mathieu Doutreligne
Dans l’agitation de notre vie quotidienne, l’idée de faire pousser ses propres légumes semble impossible. L’histoire et les photos qui suivent vous prouveront le contraire et vous donneront la motivation nécessaire pour réaliser vos rêves.
TRANSLATION: In the bustle of daily life, the idea of growing your own vegetables seems impossible. The story and photos below prove the opposite and offer you the motivation to achieve your dreams.
Si les autorités le permettent – If the authorities accept it.
If drainage is an issue, raised beds can be very productive and easy to manage. Photo credit: Rebecca Finneran, MSU
Choosing a smart site for your vegetable garden
Selecting the optimal placement of your vegetable garden is important for success
Selecting the optimal placement of your vegetable garden is important for success. When it comes to choosing a site to plant your vegetable garden, understanding the essential key components including sunlight, water and good soil will ensure your garden bounty. Picking fresh vegetables from your own garden or patio container can be very rewarding. In addition, you may discover new foods to add to your plate and may influence others to try new vegetables.
4 KEYS TO DESIGNING AND BUILDING RAISED GARDEN BEDS
by Ken Lain, the Mountain Gardener
A raised bed is a bottomless frame set into a shallow trench. The sides can be made of almost any durable building material: rock, brick, concrete, and interlocking blocks. Retired watering troughs or claw foot bathtubs are the easiest raised beds, as long as they have the necessary capacity and drainage.
Mountain gardeners use raised beds to sidestep a long list of gardening challenges: Bad dirt is a non-issue, because you fill a raised bed with a customized soil-and-compost blend; drainage is built in and keeps erosion in check. Poor sun exposure isn’t a problem because beds can be positioned wherever light is more favorable. Plants can be spaced more closely together, so yields go up, water use efficiency is maximized, and weeds are crowded out of soil space. A really valuable asset is for gardeners who wage constant warfare against destructive burrowing animals; read on for specific building details that can keep raised bed gardens safe from these critters.
Location, Location, Location – Ideally, a north-to-south orientation takes full advantage of available sunlight. Avoid sites shaded by the house or under messy trees.
Planning & Building – At minimum build 3’ x 6’ beds. This size is wide enough to support sprawling tomatoes, but narrow enough to reach easily from both sides. The ideal height is 1 to 2 feet tall. Leave at least 18 inches between beds for walkways, or allow 2 ft if you want enough space to get through with a wheelbarrow or lawnmower. If possible, build more than one bed, which makes it easier to rotate crops and meet the watering needs of specific plants. Because the beds must be level, building on a flat spot avoids a lot of digging!