Raised Bed Vegatable Gardening
I would like to see a discussion on Raised Bed Vegatable Gardening. If it is already here I must have missed it.
Here are my thoughts on raised beds:
- No matter how bad your existing soil is, you can just build a raised bed on top of it, with new soil in it.
- Good for your back, if you build a high enough bed
- Less likely to suffer from soil compaction because there's a clear boundary between walking areas and growing areas
- Gives you another excuse to spend most of your time outside in the garden ;-)
- Costs more than usual row gardening
- It takes time to build raised beds
- Must be made of high quality wood in order to survive the weather
I agree with Thomas.
Raised Bed Gardening
I love raised bed gardening!
I have eight beds; four foot wide by eight foot long by two foot high.
They are still snow-covered and awaiting the warmth of the sun [as am I]!
What are your raised beds constructed from?
The beds are constructed of 2" x 12" CA [copper azone] lumber. I know that treated lumber is considered a "no-no" by some but I believe that what I am utilizing is the best alternative.
Hopefully, I am right.
Steamheater, thanks for getting back to me. The problem with copper treated wood is the leaching of the copper into the soil, especially if you are growing edibles. Too much copper ingestion can be toxic to humans and animals.
I knew the "hazards" of copper going in but seeing as how I am 70 years old, have a metal ball&socket for a left hip, am "blessed" with a blown-out right knee, am considering having the left hip replaced and thanks to asbestos; I have COPD, I figured I could handle a bit more copper in my system :}
The real truth is that I wanted something that would give me many years of gardening as well as make it a tad easier on my ol bod!
I did line the beds with plastic but that too is probably "bad" for me!?
All-in-all; I feel as though I made the right decision for our lives. Even though the vegies are laced with a minute amount of copper, they sure do taste good!
Hmmm, you don't suppose copper adds flavor, do you?
Art, you gave me a giggle with your description of your physical 'replacements'. My hubby, who is only behind you by 4 years, has a similar history from knee replacements to titanium plates in his neck to joint replacements in his hand (with more to come), so I understand wanting to make it easier on your 'bod' for gardening.
The copper one gets from veggies grown in soil that has been leached into, in and of itself, may not cause harm, but with heavy metals it's cumulative. So my hope would be that any children or young folks eating those veggies won't be potentially harmed at a later time. And yes, copper can add some flavor. :)
We do share our small bounty with others but mostly it is the squashes, cukes, tomatoes and other plants that are grown in beds made of "huge" rocks. Hey, they felt awful huge when I was moving them!
I grow mostly lettuce, chard, spinach, mesclun, peas and carrots in the beds made of wood. We tend to devour those crops before they even get a chance to mature. I also have 2 beds with asparagus in them which I cannot even think about harvesting for another year!
The beds do make my gardening easier because of the fact that when I get down on the ground, I do have to look around for anything else that I can do before I crawl to a rock and use it as leverage to get back up! :}
Here's to spring!