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Thread: Make a garden box.

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    Default Make a garden box.

    I used to make garden boxes, by taking untreated wood,and make a frame that has untreated plywood on the bottom and filling it full of top soil and planting seeds.We would grow spices,peppers,and even tomatoes.They are cheap to make.but take time to make them.


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    The IP police will be along shortly.
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    Senior Member alaskabushman's Avatar
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    Hmmm, this grammar looks familiar. I'm staying out of this one.
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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Yeah me too......not gonna waste my time with logic.....This all will be gone in a few minutes....
    You would have thought little different name....maybe...Naw.
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    I wonder if he used a big rock for his garden box engine.
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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Slippery little devil.......LOL

    Next will be "usetabesubmairne"....?
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    Super Moderator crashdive123's Avatar
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    I'm guessing that he has one of those little plastic submarines that he plays with in the tub. Between the bubbles and the dirty water he is a great sub commander.
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    Not a Mod finallyME's Avatar
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    So I missed it... no problem. 1 post and already banned.
    The subject matter is at least worth discussing. Maybe for me at least, since I just moved to a new house and spring is coming.
    I have no idea what my soil is like here. It is Utah, and part of the ancient lake bed. I like raised beds, because you don't have to mess with the ground soil much, just put in what you want. But, I also don't like buying dirt. When I had chickens, I would cycle everything through them, and then compost their stuff. At first, I would use my own grass clippings, but then realized that I didn't have enough grass. So, I would cut the neighbors grass. After a year of that, I found a cheap supply of straw bales. $5 would get me a LOT of straw.
    I am a different kind of gardener than most. There are a lot of people, especially here, that like gardening as a hobby. To them it is relaxing. They generally buy their fertilizer from the home centers. And, they buy dirt there as well. If they grow vegetables, the cost of the stuff they buy generally makes them come out even with if they just bought from the store. Of course, they do have the piece of mind that they know where their food comes from. There is nothing wrong with that.. to each their own. I am a different gardener. For me, I see it as training. If I can't go to the store to buy food, how do I grow it? That also means I can't go to the store to buy fertilizer, or dirt, or gas for the tiller. This is just my excuse for being a terrible gardener. I buy as little as possible and most of my efforts have not ended well. This year I plan to just compost. I might build some boxes, but don't plan to grow anything in them.
    The OP said he puts plywood on the bottom....why would you do that?
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    FM he is a one post ban because he is a troll returning after being banned yesterday under another name.

    He puts plywood bottoms on the raised beds because he does not know what he is doing and does not realize a bottom on a raised bed would create a miniature swamp.

    He probably never built a raised bed in his life.
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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Gardening in boxes is a good subject....OP presentation ...not so much.....so he was banned before that
    bad attitude and name calling....started.

    Boxes with bottoms generally don't work well unless there is a good reason....drainage being a biggest problem'

    To solve an interesting problem....my front flowers are in 2-8 ft long ceder boxes.
    The poured basement has a a crack just behind the concrete steps....big job to take out steps, dig down and chisel out to patch.
    (yeah has been chiseled out and patched for the inside....and TV ad notwithstanding....doesn't work all that well.

    Soooo....Problem was foundation planting bushes were in clay holes...kept dieing from root rot.....were trying to grow in a "clay bowl" that would drown out the roots.
    Pulled these out....all clay around foundation....planted flowers ....but still drained back to the wall in a big rain...water in the basement.

    Bermed up with RR ties two layers...back filling with homemade compost and garden soil....planted flowers were not getting enough water ...watering did allow water to run back to the crack.....

    Long story to get to the 2 ceder boxes along the upper row of ties......with drain holes and blocking....also a window box.

    Refresh yearly with fresh compost....planting seedlings...shade varieties (they are in heavy shade).....Then a soaker hose running the length of the boxes including the window box allows direct controlled watering....and with berm...no leaks.

    Boxes were built in 1988....and did have to do a "Patch job"....bottom getting kinda rotted so took out dirt....added patching, then black landscape cloth, put the dirt back in with fresh garden soil/compost. ....back in business.

    Is a long way around....long journey....but in this case...planter boxes work well with bottoms.

    Dealing with clay...whole 'nother subject...but raised beads and "Bottomless boxes"(that sounded funny?) work well to get up and running in poor, hard packed clay soil....
    Have used a take-down version to move from year to year.

    Put up a box, if possible dig up inside...add amendments.....dirt, compost, rotted manure ....whatever you can find......make growing much easier to till and use....adds some tilth to your soil..
    Last edited by hunter63; 03-10-2017 at 12:36 PM.
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    Senior Member alaskabushman's Avatar
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    Raised beds are the only way to go up here. With such shallow dirt (and what we do have is laced with massive tree roots), its much easier to just make some raised planters. I had a supply of rough cut 1x10's that were perfect for making boxes for the wife's garden. I didn't put any bottoms in them, but the 10'' was too deep for the amount of dirt we had, so I filled them 1/3 full with sawdust from the local mill. I scrounge dirt anywhere I can. While our soil is very good, getting good clean soil without rocks roots and glacial clay is a job. Between bags of potting soil and whatever I could scavenge we were able to fill all the boxes.

    I probed all around my property with a 8' chunk of rebar trying to find a spot deep enough for an outhouse hole. I finally hit upon the location...3 1/2 feet, that was the only spot I could dig a decent hole before I hit bedrock.
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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    I can imagine that would be a problem like the clay is here.
    Talk about scrounging dirt....
    My first garden was on a patch of bare clay...had been a swing set on most of it so was like concrete.....needed "good dirt"

    Across the street was a development of new houses
    Had been leveled off....so when the foundations (we have basements here) were dug...the original black good top soil wa dug up from under about 6 ft of fill.
    They looked like "black rocks" (was still clay)...but abiut 18" thick.

    I would drive my VW dragging a piece of metal roofing kind folded up with a chain...as a "stone boat"....LOL.
    Dragged may "loads" home....."dirt"

    Also on the look out for leaves (no trees), manure sawdust, straw ...and kitchen compost.

    Have you tried a load of fairly fresh manure in the bottom of a raised bed?

    Friend claimed that put in in the fall.....dirt over the top....would rot over winter and heat the ground earlier.
    May be what you need?

    Sounds like sawdust may work the same way....some trees sawdust that is fresh, is "hot" and will burn the plants.
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    I keep meaning to build a raised bed or two...the soil in my backyard isn't absolutely fantastic, and my brother in law has put a few together over at their place that he's had tremendous results with. That being said, I wouldn't be putting a bottom on them for exactly the same reason that my flower pots have holes in the bottom....I'm not trying to grow anything that wants to have wet feet.

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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Raised bed and boxes also are practical way to work very acidic soils....which I would imagine is common where a lot of coniferous tree grow.

    Rais it up, mix in you dirt grow a crop, as well as help turn the soil to better garden soil.
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    Alaska, The Madness! 1stimestar's Avatar
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    As most of my "yard" has been turned into my new leach field, I plan on doing raised beds this year and plant grass between them on all this newly turned soil. I'm not sure I want to use rr ties though as they are covered in creosote and also, splinters...
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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1stimestar View Post
    As most of my "yard" has been turned into my new leach field, I plan on doing raised beds this year and plant grass between them on all this newly turned soil. I'm not sure I want to use rr ties though as they are covered in creosote and also, splinters...
    These ties are to berm up flower beds....
    I have heard about RR ties being bad as well.....as these are very weathered I am not concerned at all.

    I fear the chemicals that come in weed and feed, fertilizer, anti bug stuff......may be a lot more harmful than old RR ties.
    Have used landscape timbers that are treated as well.....older one were bad...and even told to use a respirator when sawing them.....

    So, I guess it's what you feal comfortable with.....standard lumber works a well....but will rot a lot sooner being in contact with soil.
    That is why I used cedar for the flower boxes.
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    Super Moderator crashdive123's Avatar
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    I didn't want to use treated lumber for my raised boxes so I used the "plastic decking". Untreated wood would not survive too long in the termite capital of the world.
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    LOL. You would wake up in the middle of the night to the sound of hundreds of tiny chain sawing plowing through you raised boxes.

    I used cedar at the church. We don't have to worry about Formosa termites.....yet.

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    Super Moderator crashdive123's Avatar
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    I could bring you some. I'm part of the task force in Jax that is trying to map and control them.
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