June 2, 2011

Gardening: How to Build a Raised Garden

Do you know where your fruits and vegetables come from? What chemicals are used on them? Are they genetically modified? If you grow your own food, you will know exactly how they are grown. This is the first year we've had an opportunity to put in our own garden. We're learning as we go, will share our experience and we look forward to hearing tips from others!

We decided to build two raised garden beds, it was very easy to do. With help from my dad, it only took an hour and a half to build.
Visit your local hardware store to buy the wood you are going to use. We decided to make two 6 ft. x 8 ft. raised beds. I bought four 8 ft. by 8 in. boards and four 6 ft. by 8 in. boards of untreated wood with no chemicals, and deck screws to secure the boards together (which cost around $40).

Find a spot in your yard that gets a good amount of sunlight and is the ideal location for a garden. Be sure to leave enough room around it for a mower if you build close to a fence or two right next to each other. 

Try to find free labor if possible (thanks Dad)! We bought two 12 ft. boards and cut in half to have four 6 ft. boards. Screw them together to create your frame.

Place the frames in the area you want and secure them with stakes in the corners. You can screw the steaks to the frame with deck screws. This will keep your garden from bowing and shifting when you add dirt.

One full trailer load was enough to fill both beds, and it only cost $20.
Have your free labor fill the frames up with dirt! It's going to settle a few inches so be sure to fill to the top. 
                            Stand back, admire your raised garden beds and get ready to plant!                             

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