Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Raised Bed



We have been digging up a portion of our grass to put in raised beds. It really bothered me to water the grass to keep it green when we could be using our precious water to water something we could eat! We have one other bed that we use as well. It provided all our our salad greens, herbs, etc. for the entire winter.

Jean Louis and I finally built our double 4x8 raised bed this weekend. I can't wait to fill it with veggies. So, along with 2 more 4x4s, we'll be set. We used redwood on this one and was sure to put the reddest part of the boards towards the dirt. If you want directions on how to build one, email me.

We followed the square foot gardening book and made a soil mixture of 1/3 compost, 1/3 vermiculite and 1/3 peat moss. I also added a little manure and organic fertilizer. It was really hard to find vermiculite in San Diego as I needed the premium grade (course). Do not use pearlite or the other grades of vermiculite as they will not retain the water as needed.

This soil combination is supposed to cut back on watering as the vermiculite and peat retain water. San Diego is in drought conditions and this summer there will be a mandated cutback so this should help.

I'm so excited - it's planting time!!!

For San Diego Gardeners:
Per Sunset Magazine, Coastal gardeners (in Sunset climate zones 21-24) can continue to plant quick-maturing, cool-season crops, including chard, leaf lettuces, radishes, and spinach. Inland (zones 18-21), switch to warm-season crops such as beans, corn, cucumber, eggplant, melons, peppers, summer and winter squash, and tomatoes. In the high desert (zone 11), wait a few more weeks; frost is still a possibility.

Plant beans, corn, cucumbers, eggplant, lima beans, melons, peppers, squash, tomatoes, and other warm-season crops. Delay planting two to four weeks in the high desert (Sunset climate zone 11) where frost is still a possibility. Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Company is a great seed source for less common varieties.

3 comments:

Sue said...

I just love bare dirt like that, and love filling it up with seeds and plants. Enjoy!

kobico said...

I had not heard about positioning the reddest portion of the boards toward the dirt before. Is the red portion the most rot resistant?

frenchie4moi said...

Yes, this is why you have the reddest portion of the wood towards the dirt - it is the least rot resistant. When picking out the wood - look for the one that is the reddest throughout.