Advice about v. quick and basic raised beds

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littlelisa

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Advice about v. quick and basic raised beds
« on: April 02, 2008, 22:56 »
Hi all
A bunch of questions before I build my raised beds this weekend (IF the weather holds... the forecast looks pretty dire!)

I have half a plot (5 rods) - just took it over this week. It's currently divided into thirds. The first third is a bit too weedy for me to clear right now, so I'm focussing getting the other two cleared and divided into neat beds, quick enough for some April planting.

My questions are:

1. What do people find the best dimensions for beds? From what I've read here (and in John's book), I gather around 4 ft/ 1.2 m wide is easiest for accessing without trampling the bed. Yes?

2. For easy paths around/between beds, I'm thinking of tacking down some of that black waterproof fabric. Any suggestions for good places to get this stuff? Would love to nicer paths at some point, but don't have a car and have to carry materials on the bus, so any suggestions for lightest (and most economical) options would be much appreciated! (I'm thinking of taking a quick and cheap approach this year, and upgrading things a bit next year)

3. Timber for beds. Can I do it using strips from pallets? Or should I buy strips of timber - are they worth it? How much should I expect to invest in bed-building, roughly?

Thanks!
Lisa

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Leaf

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Advice about v. quick and basic raised beds
« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2008, 09:03 »
ok, bed size is upito you, squat down and reach, thats how wide max you want.
timber from pallets is ok, bang some small steaks in the ground then fix timber to them,
any thing like mypex, plantex etc is fine if you put it down flat, here is a pic on how i've done it




this is half a 5 rod plor, ready to plant, in gonna dig the other half for fruit beds.

just do a bit at a time :D  :D  :D
we can plant a house, we can build a tree

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noshed

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Advice about v. quick and basic raised beds
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2008, 21:52 »
Mine are a bit scruffier:



I've used a bit of that black weed stuff for a couple of paths - very good and hard-wearing, not slippery when wet and the rest are weeds.
Self-sufficient in rasberries and bindweed. Slug pellets can be handy.

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Celtic Eagle

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Advice about v. quick and basic raised beds
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2008, 13:17 »
Pallet board or anyting you can get for nowt otherwise too expensive IMO look for builder renovating old houses floorboards and shirting boards or olsd shelves are best.  Dont use manufactured board like ply or chipboard it will just break up

For paths weed fabric is fine
Blessed Be
Celtic Eagle

Everything grows green for a Celt

Mostly organic 'cept weedkiller and slugs

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compostqueen

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Advice about v. quick and basic raised beds
« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2008, 14:31 »
my lotty mate had some Link a bord raised beds as a pressie and the rats have gnawed a great hole in it  :(  So whatever you get make sure it's gnaw proof  :D

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Trillium

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Advice about v. quick and basic raised beds
« Reply #5 on: April 04, 2008, 16:28 »
I'm still trying to figure why rats would find LinkaBord tasty?

littlelisa, you've got the right idea. Do what you can this year, and slowly work towards your goal in the following years. None of us got it perfect the first year, nor could we find or afford it. The pallet boards are a good start. They won't last beyond a few years but by then you'll be ready for something better, and possibly in another shape or size.  Time and experience are the best teachers.

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littlelisa

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Advice about v. quick and basic raised beds
« Reply #6 on: April 19, 2008, 09:57 »
Thanks everyone for the encouragement!

So far, I've gotten the first section dug over and made into beds - the photos on my blog showed how they looked 2 weeks ago, but in the last 2 weeks have raked over and planted them up with onions (small back bed), potatoes (big middle bed), and some lettuce and spinach (small front bed).

http://serengetisnail.blogspot.com/2008/04/allotment-progress.html

Leaf - I totally LOVED your bed design, but when I tried to do something as stylish, realised that it wasted too much space (because of the way my plot is already in long rectangular strips in different states of overgrowth!)

Too bad about the iffy weather this weekend... I want to get the second area dug over before this baby arrives!!!

L

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belto

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Advice about v. quick and basic raised beds
« Reply #7 on: April 19, 2008, 16:07 »
Excuse my ignorance but apart from accessability what are the advantages of raised beds :?:

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superplanty

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Advice about v. quick and basic raised beds
« Reply #8 on: April 21, 2008, 17:53 »
noshed. where did you get the blue pipe from on your beds. is it any good for supporting netting/enviromesh ? thanks.

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noshed

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Advice about v. quick and basic raised beds
« Reply #9 on: April 21, 2008, 22:51 »
Yes it's just the job for that. I got mine in Jewsons if you ask for blue alcathene water pipe they will know what you are on about. I think mine is 20 or 25mm and they sell it in 20m rolls. For a 1.2 m (4') bed cut it to 2m and you get a good bend.
Just shove it on some short bits of stick to hold it up.

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SalJ1980

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Advice about v. quick and basic raised beds
« Reply #10 on: May 09, 2008, 18:47 »
Quote from: "noshed"
Yes it's just the job for that. I got mine in Jewsons if you ask for blue alcathene water pipe they will know what you are on about. I think mine is 20 or 25mm and they sell it in 20m rolls. For a 1.2 m (4') bed cut it to 2m and you get a good bend.
Just shove it on some short bits of stick to hold it up.


My local hardware store also sells the blue piping, it's £1/m, no idea if that's expensive or not but they're always generous with measuring lengths of stuff and rounding down the pennies anyway! I bought some to use as the fill tubes on Self Watering Containers, hadn't thought how useful it could be for other things, will certainly be putting more to use "a la Nosh" ! :lol:
Sal

Organic...so far!



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