We have a special project going on at Blumenflor... Raised beds. Four of them.
Measurements are 8ft.L. x 3ft W. x2ft.H. They are made of metal which we left unpainted. We like the rusty look plus our soil can always use the extra iron. They are just 4 walls bolted together, there is no bottom. We laid down high quality landscape fabric first and then built them on top of that thinking to keep the weeds down.
Last winter we had that vortex freeze and many of our shrubs and trees that we had in pots died. The raised beds are filled with those shrubs and trees on the bottom filling up 4 raised beds at least 3/4 of the way. We are thinking they will eventually decompose similar to the Hugel method. Filling up the rest with a mix of garden soil, peatmoss, compost either chicken, cattle or cotton. We are still working on the best ration but a 2/3 soil and 1/3 compost seems to be what worked for us. We did not use direct garden soil from the garden because we hate weeding! It is a matter of what you have on hand. For example you could use your old planters from the summer that had died and fill up with that. If you do use top soil from garden make sure all weeds are out, maybe even sieve it through. You can hand weed too, it probably won't be as bad as an actual garden.
We planted strawberries , sweet potatoes, herbs and now have winter crops like kale, cabbage etc. in them.
They are drip irrigated using netafim drip emitters at 1ft apart.
The whole purpose of a raised bed for us was the convenience of not having to bend as much, closer to the greenhouses or to the house in general. Walking by them every day is a joy especially when you can see how everything is growing on a higher level.
It also keeps the rabbits out. Birds do still get in there. We have to work on that yet.
All in all we love these raised beds and feel the investment in them was well worth it.
Our raised beds were made by the team at Root to Plate here in Seminole. Check out their webpage Root to Plate
You can make your own out of the materials that are available to you...
Check out our online store to buy Garden Supplies or even compost.
We are thinking of doing a work shop on raised beds in the future.
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