PDF drawing and exploded view: Elvis Alcequiez
The download link in PDF format for both the drawings and the cutting list is after the instructions and tips.
|Wood Lumber 2 1/2″||L||W||T|
|A||back and front wood lumbers||2||5′ 3 1/2″||~ 1′||2 1/4″|
|B||left and right wood lumbers||2||2′ 6 1/2″||~ 1′||2 1/4″|
|C||lateral reinforcement board||2||4′ 3″||4″||2″|
|D||support slats||9||2′ 6 1/2″||4″||2″|
|E||lateral reinforcement board#2||2||1′ 10 1/2″||4″||2″|
|F||4×4 Post||4||~ 2′ 7 1/2″||4″||4″|
Instructions and tips
Building a waist-high raised garden bed can be a great way to make gardening more accessible and enjoyable. Here are some tips to help you get started:
Choose the right location: Look for a location that receives plenty of sunlight and has good drainage. Avoid areas that are prone to flooding or have poor soil quality.
Decide on the size: Determine how large you want your raised bed to be. Keep in mind that a raised bed should be no wider than 4 feet to make it easy to reach the center from all sides.
Select your materials: Choose materials that are durable, weather-resistant, and safe for growing food. Cedar, redwood, and untreated pine are popular choices.
Assemble the bed: Build the frame of your raised bed by attaching the boards together using screws or brackets. Use a level to ensure that the bed is straight and even.
Add a bottom layer: Consider adding a layer of landscape fabric or cardboard to the bottom of the bed to prevent weeds from growing up through the soil.
Fill with soil: Fill your raised bed with a high-quality soil mix that is rich in nutrients and organic matter. You may need to purchase additional soil if your garden bed is particularly large.
Plant your garden: Once your bed is filled with soil, it’s time to plant your garden! Choose plants that are suitable for the amount of sunlight your garden receives, and make sure to water regularly.
Here are some materials that you may need to construct a raised garden bed:
- Lumber (treated or untreated) to create the frame of the bed. Common sizes include 2×6, 2×8, 2×10 and 4×4.
- Screws or nails to hold the frame together.
- Landscape fabric or weed barrier to line the bottom of the bed and prevent weeds from growing up through the soil.
- Topsoil, compost, and other organic matter to fill the bed.
- Mulch to top the soil and retain moisture and control weeds.
- String, stakes, and a measuring tape mark out the location and size of the bed.
- A saw, drill, and screwdriver or hammer for assembling the bed.
The size of screws or nails you will need to build a raised garden bed will depend on the size of the lumber you use for the frame. If you are using 2×6 or 2×8 lumber, 3-inch deck screws or 16d (3.5-inch) nails will work well.
If you are using 2×10 or 4×4 lumber, 4-inch deck screws or 20d (3.75 inches) nails will be appropriate.
What do you put on the bottom of a raised garden bed?
To make sure that your raised garden bed has good drainage and to stop weeds from growing through the soil, you can use different materials on the bottom of the bed.
These materials include:
Landscape fabric, which lets water through but stops weeds.
Hardware cloth, which is made of steel mesh and can prevent pests from getting into the bed while allowing water to pass through.
Rocks or gravel can be used to line the bottom of the bed to improve drainage.
Cardboard or newspaper can work as a temporary weed barrier but will decompose over time.
Plastic, which some people use as a weed barrier, is not ideal as it can trap heat and is not eco-friendly.
What is the cheapest way to make raised beds?
There are a few ways to make raised beds inexpensively:
Use reclaimed or repurposed materials: You can use materials such as pallets, bricks, or stones to create the frame of your raised bed. This is a great way to recycle materials and save money.
Use untreated lumber: You can use untreated lumber such as pine, cedar or redwood to construct the frame of your raised bed. These types of wood are often cheaper than treated wood, although they will rot faster.
Use a simple design: Keep the design of the raised bed simple, this will save you money on materials and labor. For example, you can use just four pieces of lumber to create a basic square or rectangle bed.
Build the bed on top of existing soil: Instead of removing the soil and replacing it with new soil, you can build the bed on top of the existing soil and add a barrier to prevent weeds from growing up through the soil.
Use weed barrier instead of landscape fabric: A weed barrier is a less expensive alternative to landscape fabric and does a similar job of preventing weeds from growing up through the soil.
Do you raise garden beds to have a bottom?
A raised garden bed can be built without a bottom, but it’s recommended to add one to improve drainage and prevent weeds from growing through the soil.
To add a bottom, you can use materials like landscape fabric, hardware cloth, rocks, gravel, cardboard or newspaper, or plastic.
These materials vary in their permeability, meaning some allow water to pass through more easily than others. It’s important to choose a material that suits your needs and lasts over time, as some materials will decompose and break down.
Without a bottom, the soil and compost in the bed can mix with the original soil, which can lead to weed growth or soil-borne diseases.
Therefore, it’s best to add a bottom to your raised garden bed to improve the overall health of your plants.
Is Treated wood OK for raised beds?
Using treated wood for raised garden beds is not recommended because the chemicals used to treat the wood can seep into the soil and contaminate the plants and food they produce, which can be harmful to our health.
Instead, it’s recommended to use untreated wood or alternative materials like metal, plastic, or stone for building raised beds.
Untreated wood is a safe and inexpensive option that can last for several years. Other materials like metal, plastic, or stone can also work well, and they do not have the same concerns as treated wood.
By using untreated wood or other safe materials, you can create a healthy and thriving garden bed without any risk of contamination or harm to your plants or your health.
Should you line raised beds with plastic?
When it comes to lining a raised bed with plastic, there are both advantages and disadvantages to consider.
One advantage is that it can help to prevent weed growth and make the bed easier to clean. Another benefit is that it can retain moisture in the soil, which is especially helpful in dry climates or during droughts.
However, there are also some drawbacks to lining a bed with plastic. The plastic can make it difficult for the soil to breathe, which can lead to poor plant growth and anaerobic conditions.
Furthermore, plastic is not biodegradable and can harm the environment, which makes it a less-than-ideal long-term solution.
Instead, organic mulch or natural materials like leaves, straw, or grass clippings can be used to suppress weeds and retain moisture without a negative environmental impact.
It’s important to carefully weigh the pros and cons before deciding whether to line a raised bed with plastic and to consider other options that may be more eco-friendly and sustainable in the long run.