Monday, April 8, 2013

DIY Raised Garden Bed

It's been more than a month since I last posted! I don't know why, but I guess we just haven't had that much going on, so there hasn't been anything interesting to post.
This weekend, however, we built a raised garden bed for our backyard and I'm excited to share it with you! We decided that we wanted to grow some veggies this summer, so we needed to find a place for them. I thought a raised bed was the perfect option to incorporate into our backyard plan. You can put a raised bed almost anywhere, just make sure you find an area that gets full sun, ideally at least 8 hrs a day.  This project is actually really easy and will make your garden look very organized, try it out!

We bought our supplies to build the bed at Home Depot. We decided we wanted a rectangular garden 4 feet wide by 6 feet long. To accomplish this, we bought one 12' board and one 8' board and had them cut them in half at the store. They will do this for free, so be sure to take advantage of this service! Also, when buying your wood, avoid any treated lumber, especially pressure-treated wood, which could seep chemicals into your garden. You definitely wouldn't want that if you are planning to eat the vegetables that you grow.  We selected kiln dried pine which cost about $30, here and here.
We created the frame by screwing the four boards together with long metal screws, after drilling pilot holes. After we had made the rectangle, we moved it into place in our garden. We dug out the ground a little bit, to make the bed level. After it is in the desired location, place a weed fabric down to prevent anything from growing up from the bottom. Then we filled it with compost and garden soil, be prepared, it takes a lot!
Then, we planted the veggies that we bought at the farmer's market! We selected roma tomatoes, zuchini squash, straight neck yellow squash, green bell peppers and pickling cucumbers. At this point, we were pretty excited with how easy it was and how great it looked already.

The next step is optional, but was necessary for us. We have tons of rabbits that live in our area and if not protected, they would likely eat our plants before they even had a chance to grow. So, we needed to create a barrier that would prevent rabbits from getting in, but still allow us to get in and tend to the veggies.
We did this with wooden garden stakes and chicken wire that we also bought at Home Depot.  We used a staple gun to keep the wire taught around the bed and secure it to the stakes.  With this done, our garden can be free from the rabbits!

Now we just wait for our veggies to grow! :)


  1. Hi Meredith! We've been wanting to try this out! Do you remember how many bags of compost/soil you bought/used? I can tell it takes a lot!

    1. Hi Kate, we put other dirt and compost from our yard on the bottom to fill it up so that we wouldn't have to buy as much. In the end, I think we bought about 10-12 cubic feet of garden soil and compost.

      You can do the math to figure how much volume you will need by finding the area of your box (4x6'=24sqft) and then multiplying times the height you want. So, if you wanted it 1 foot deep, that would require a total of 24 cubic feet of soil. Each bag at the store should have the volume listed (i.e. 1 or 1.5 cu ft).

      Hope that helps!

    2. Hi Meredith,

      Thanks so much for getting back to me--and with such detailed information! This is such great stuff--if I had thought about it a little more, I probably could have figured that out--but thank you so much for doing it for me! :)

      Thanks again!

  2. Hi, this looks great, how do u access the veggies with the chicken wire? Thanks!

  3. Hi, this looks great, how do u access the veggies with the chicken wire? Thanks!

  4. Hi! I love this idea, but was wondering the same thing as a few other people - how do you get to the plants with the wire permanently (?) there.


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