The Accidental Smallholder Forum

Growing => Vegetables => Topic started by: Crofterloon on June 30, 2013, 09:00:32 pm

Title: Raised beds
Post by: Crofterloon on June 30, 2013, 09:00:32 pm
I got some old scaffolding boards today from a builder having a clear out. The boards are about 12 feet long whilst others are broken.
If I go for raised beds 12 feet long what is the best width to make the beds?
Should I clear the soil from the bed then refill it with manure soil?
Any tips welcome.
Title: Re: Raised beds
Post by: clydesdaleclopper on June 30, 2013, 10:04:21 pm
No more than 4ft wide then you can reach all the bed from one of the sides without walking on it.


I would dig over the soil and incorporate the manure which will help to raise the level. You don't want it all manure as it will be too rich and you wouldn't have the correct fungal and bacterial balance that you will get from the soil.
Title: Re: Raised beds
Post by: shygirl on June 30, 2013, 10:18:22 pm
yes you definitely have to reach the middle comfortably. in the gardening books it tells you to dig up the turf sods and turn them upside down then fill up with good soil. we have lined the bottom with cardboard, and weed fabric before to stop weeds coming up. wev also had solid wooden bases which is the best way but takes up more wood.
soil type depends on what you want to grow, sandy soil would be good for carrots, and they grow well in raised beds.
i have grown tatties, onions, salads etc in raised beds but its easiest to choose crops that are easy to harvest with hand tools. i prefer to dig up tatties with a big fork. also mixing in manure takes a bit more effort with hand spade.
Title: Re: Raised beds
Post by: doganjo on June 30, 2013, 11:16:36 pm
And to save your back make them hip height - fill with rubble to half way up and top up with soil
Title: Re: Raised beds
Post by: Crofterloon on July 01, 2013, 10:08:23 pm
Thanks Guys some good info there.
I do not have enough wood to make a wooden base but I get the idea.
I have an overgrown area but I will dig out the weeds before building the beds.
Title: Re: Raised beds
Post by: happygolucky on July 01, 2013, 10:29:16 pm
I may make some in our garden but they will be high and filled from compost from the local recycle  center, its good free stuff"""  I need them to look nice otherwise I would use old wardrobes tipped up on their backs..... :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Raised beds
Post by: Lesley Silvester on July 01, 2013, 11:00:32 pm
My new raised beds are about 30 inches tall and 40 inches across. They are filled with rotted manure to within a few inches of the top and then soil added. I am growing French beans and squashes in them. Both are hungry plants so will enjoy the manure.
Title: Re: Raised beds
Post by: shygirl on July 01, 2013, 11:29:59 pm
  I need them to look nice otherwise I would use old wardrobes tipped up on their backs..... :thumbsup:

thats a great idea. we have a huge charity shop near here that is full of old wardrobes each about 10 made of real wood too. i often think it would be cost effective to buy these instead of firewood tho it would be rather wasteful. i dont actually buy wood as we have woods here but the price b&q sell firewood for is daylight robbery , 8 a little sack.  :o
when i made dodgy ugly raised beds i put natural stones on the outside (from an old stone wall) and they looked much better.