Dirt Under Our Fingernails

Making raised beds!

We definitely had dirt under our fingernails last night!  The tub water was not pretty after the boys’ bath.  There is something so invigorating about being out in the fresh air, dirt in your fingernails and helping things grow!  For the past two weekends, we’ve been busy in our garden planting, weeding and making our raised beds.  The boys had so much fun helping Luke construct the beds.  First we started with some lumber from Home Depot then we added home grown compost and top soil.

John drilling

If you’d like to make raised beds.  Here’s what you’ll need:

For an 8′ x 4′ raised bed:
– 3 x 8″ x 1″ x 8′ pressure treated timber
– 1 x 4″ x 2″ x 6′ pressure treated timber
– 1 x 1 1/2″ x 1 1/2″ pressure treated stake

1. Cut one of the 8 x 1 in half.
2. Cut four studs of eight inch lengths of the 4 x 2.
3. Pre-drill and screw two of the studs to each end of the 8′ lengths. (4 inch side against the timber).
4. Take one of the 4′ lengths.  Pre-drill and screw each end into the the studs at the end of the 8′ pieces.
5. Repeat at the other end.
6. Turf off a 4′ x 8′ piece of grass (unless you are starting with dirt anyway).
7. Put the frame into the area you’ve cleared.  Level and square.
8. Cut two 12″ lengths from the stake ensuring the cut is at a 45° angle.
9. On the inside of the frame, hit the stakes into the ground next to the 8′ lengths, about half way down.
10. Level and square again.
11. Screw the 8′ lengths into the stakes.
12. You may want to stake the 4′ lengths as well.
13. Turn the soil inside the frame so it isn’t hard.  Then, fill with compost and top soil.
14. Now you’re reading to plant!

Here is one of the beds we did.  
We did two (8′ x 4′) one for our root vegetables and one for our salad vegetables.  Tomatoes and lettuce we’ll grow up on our deck.  The tomatoes really like the heat.  Conor helped Luke fill the beds with compost.  My little guy took the compost from the compost pile on his little dump truck.
He pushed it all the way across the yard to the other side.  Then dumped it out.  Only to do it about a few dozen more times.  
Conor & the compost!
Boy was he knackered at the end of the day (but that isn’t a bad thing).  We have many rabbits that visit our yard to Poppy’s delight.  We don’t like how they eat our carrots so we got some plastic fencing to put around the beds.
We built a third bed this past weekend for our raspberries – Conor absolutely adores them and our lovely neighbor had some spare canes from her garden.  We planted some day lilies, some mums, forsythia, azaleas and next weekend we’ll be addressing the grass (or lack there of) situation.  Some seeds went in the beds.  John and Conor found lots of worms and made mud pies.  Oh, and we’ve been doing lots of watering:
It was a brilliant weekend in the garden.  Poppy enjoyed all the company in the yard:

As many of you know, I love flowers and vegetables, but I don’t have the greenest of thumbs. Please keep your fingers firmly crossed that everything survives.  Happy Gardening!
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  1. says

    Your little helpers look like they are having so much fun! I love how your little guy was filling the raised bed with his dump truck! :)

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