Ronda and Greg both love to garden.We have lots of area on the grounds for a garden, but we decided to build a raised bed garden for many reasons. We built the frame from 2×8 red cedar purchased from a local sawmill. The cost was about 1/5 of what lumber yards wanted. The bed is 15 feet across the back with 2 legs protruding 5 feet from the front. The width of each bed is 5 feet so we can easily reach the center of the beds from either side. The depth is 24″. From the ground up: 1/2″ hardware cloth to keep out moles and armadillos, landscape fabric to keep out grass and weeds, 3 ” of river gravel for good drainage, and a mixture of top soil, composted goat manure and sand. The first year, we only filled the bed 16 inches deep to leave room for soil amendments. Thanks to the neighbors horses that are kept in our pasture we have a couple of compost piles working. We plan on adding that to the growing medium next spring. We also plan on extending the legs next year but only 16″ deep.
The raised bed is easier to care for as there is no getting down on our knees to care for the plants. We never walk on the soil, so compaction is not a problem. Also, we can adjust the soil properties in each section for specific needs of the plants growing in the section. The following posts show our progress in photos. We hope you enjoy our adventure as much as we do.