A transplanted Southern Californian living in North Dakota Idaho, with some insights on life with deaf dogs, a gluten free spouse, and the occasional mischievous garden gnome. Thank you for visiting and I hope you enjoy.

Monday, March 25, 2019

Raised Garden Beds

Construction continues on the raised beds in the vegetable garden.

Raised beds take a little time to construct and need the addition of a large amount of material (soil, compost, mulch) in order to fill. But in my experience they're worth the large amount of work on the front end. Even though they're only a foot or so above ground they require less bending over to harvest or pull weeds. This benefit will increase as we get older and less mobile but want to continue gardening in our later years.

Because they're above the ground raised beds also decrease the risk of soil contaminants being drawn into your veggies. In older neighborhoods lead can be a concern and it's possible to have significant lead contamination built up in the soil. Although we haven't had our soil tested for lead yet, we've mitigated much of the possible risk with raised beds.
We've learned a lot over the years about raised beds and the pros and cons of different types of construction. The raised vegetable garden beds that we had in North Dakota (pictures here and here and here) we fairly easy to assemble but started splitting, cracking, and breaking down after 3-4 years. I didn't want to be making new wooden garden beds every five years.

The new garden beds are made with landscape blocks and will last for quite a while. They're "permanent" but could be moved if I really don't like how they function or am really motivated to move them. We're going to temporarily pause the garden beds at this point. We need to leave some space in the bottom of the picture for...well we won't ruin that surprise quite yet.

And yes that's Shaak Ti in the upper corner of the picture, looking up at the squirrel (not pictured) in the tree. 

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