Maine Guide

Raised Garden Bed - Which Wood to Use?

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OK, did a search, and saw some older threads.  

 

Moved into a new house in September 2019.  It has plenty of space and a good area for a raised bed.  It's at a slight decline and the back yard is all sod.

 

From what I read in the prior posts, I should not use weed block, and probably try to get the sod out first, so that beneficial microbes, worms, bugs etc. can rise into the garden soil eventually.

 

My question is - what do you all use for wood?  I'm reading spruce or cedar.  Pressure Treated, although not as toxic as it once was, is still to be avoided.

 

What dimensions are you using?  2 x 8", 10", 12"?  How long can I expect the untreated wood to last?

 

Thanks all.

 

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Look into the new manufactured deck boards like Trex. I haven't checked to see if their are any downfalls with chemical leaching, but I would think not, and they will hold up well.

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I used 2x fir.  Has a few years on it and should be good for 5-7 I think.  You may have cedar available and cheaper but cost was pretty huge here.  
Not sure about trex or Azek but it’s kind of floppy and may not have structural strength unless staked every few feet. 

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I built some for a small start-up farm a few years ago. 8' x 4' x 11" high.  PT 2 x 6's stacked two high. Strapped on the outside and corners by  11" 2 x 4's.  Then I took 4 x 8 sheets of 1/4" pvc and skirted the insides. 

Those things should last for a real long time. 

Cost about $70.00 each.

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I made 6x16 two sections, 12 high (11 1/4, precisely), using 2x8 fur, 8 long and 12" high, with 4x4 for inside corners and  several 2x2 for outside support.

 

You may want to add irrigation system now, before you start gardening.

Just add hose connection in one corner so you can connect garden hose now and then when watering goodies in that bed.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

18 mins ago, Ben Lippen said:

I built some for a small start-up farm a few years ago. 8' x 4' x 11" high.  PT 2 x 6's stacked two high. Strapped on the outside and corners by  11" 2 x 4's.  Then I took 4 x 8 sheets of 1/4" pvc and skirted the insides. 

Those things should last for a real long time. 

Cost about $70.00 each.

Nice. I'm leaning in the PT with liner direction on my next builds. Why PVC rather than the less reactive polyethylene? It's probably cheaper too. How'd you attach the PVC, SS screws, staples or such? Can you even get SS crown staples?

 

And @Maine Guide Look into drip watering systems, I couldn't have a garden without it. 

Edited by gellfex

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16 mins ago, Ben Lippen said:

Then I took 4 x 8 sheets of 1/4" pvc and skirted the insides. 

   :clap:     :howdy:

I wish I was thinking about this few years ago.

:idea:

 

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3 mins ago, gellfex said:

Nice. I'm leaning in the PT with liner direction on my next builds. Why PVC rather than the less reactive polyethylene? It's probably cheaper too. How'd you attach the PVC, SS screws, staples or such? Can you even get SS crown staples?

The pvc is stronger, more dense, easier to work with, and yeah cheaper too. 

I used 16G SS nails to set the liners, then added  SS trim screws to the top perimeter.  Once the dirt is in, it's all good, but the top is exposed to light and when the dirt settles it will waffle. So ya wan't a nice straight edge... 

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43 mins ago, gellfex said:

Nice. I'm leaning in the PT with liner direction on my next builds. Why PVC rather than the less reactive polyethylene? It's probably cheaper too. How'd you attach the PVC, SS screws, staples or such? Can you even get SS crown staples?

 

And @Maine Guide Look into drip watering systems, I couldn't have a garden without it. 

Thank you both for the tips on the drip hose.  Great idea!

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51 mins ago, Maine Guide said:

Thank you both for the tips on the drip hose.  Great idea!

Just to be clear although maybe I misunderstand you, "drip watering" isn't drip hose, it's a system of branched tubes delivering water to each plant via "drip emitters" that release a specific amount per hr, like 1-4L. You set the whole thing on a timer. Search for "dripworks" and they have tons of info.

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7 mins ago, gellfex said:

Just to be clear although maybe I misunderstand you, "drip watering" isn't drip hose, it's a system of branched tubes delivering water to each plant via "drip emitters" that release a specific amount per hr, like 1-4L. You set the whole thing on a timer. Search for "dripworks" and they have tons of info.

Thanks!  I will check that out.

 

Good catch, as I was just thinking about a "drip hose".

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Huge fan of drip irrigation.  Other than the fact that my dog like to tear the tubing out (old dog didn't do this) I have had now issues with my system-  Very easy to install, minimizes water use, keep weeds down as you arent' watering the whole garden bed and save a ton of time in hot water.  Cheap too.  

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image.jpg.8568e7e7069e8674fe1e92ccac47f7c5.jpgimage.jpg.7e0b6e015d7cb023db0323034ee66ffc.jpgMines bluestone, with landscaping fabric along the edges. Also use a drip system, perennial herbs are coming up. Last years arugula is going to seed.

image.jpg

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