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Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

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Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  tdang on 4/18/2013, 9:55 pm

Hey guys, this is my first time gardening. I built my raised bed over a spot that collects water, thinking that it'd be good for summer time. Well I learned that I was wrong. Everything I've planted have been thriving thus far, but 2 of my lettuce plants got root rot. Other then that, things have been progressing quite well. Is it ok as is, or should I do something? Here's a photo to give you an idea

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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  jblessing on 4/18/2013, 10:44 pm

In the All New Square Foot Gardening book, Mel says not to set up where it puddles. On page 47, under Location, it lists five things to look for. Number 4 is "The area should not puddle after a heavy rain." While he has some ideas on page 50 on how to fix the low ares, they're meant for before creating the square garden on it. Can you move your garden and just try elsewhere?
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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  jazzycat on 4/18/2013, 11:05 pm

If you can't move it elsewhere, you could turn it into a self-watering, permaculture kind of thing and put the garden on top. (make a frame the same size as the bed and fill it with rocks or rotting wood or something, then cover it with weed fabric and your mix. I'm not an expert on this, but I have seen videos about it.) No watering. heh. Not strict sfging though, and I may get smacked for suggesting it. eek

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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  tdang on 4/18/2013, 11:21 pm

How do you suggest I move it with my plants already established? Also, since most of my plants are doing well, is it just a matter or time before they drown? Or if it was a problem, it would've happened already?
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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  chjbr63 on 4/18/2013, 11:37 pm

Looks to me like you could make a temp dam on the left and remove as much of the water around you box. At the end of season move it or fix drainage problem.
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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  tdang on 4/18/2013, 11:41 pm

How should I make the dam? I was thinking sand. Would that work?
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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  chjbr63 on 4/19/2013, 12:07 am

Sand would be hard to place with water already there. I would try cheap blocks.
Like these http://www.homedepot.com/p/4-in-x-8-in-x-16-in-Concrete-Block-30166432/100350188#.UXDAHNczZWs
Hard to tell by your picture but I would guess 10 blocks to go across twice. Push down so you have about a 6 inch wall. Stager the joints and I would maybe put some plastic in between the two layers.
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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  tdang on 4/19/2013, 12:15 am

The water evaporates over a day or two. When that happens, would sand be a viable option? Thank you very much for your response, I really appreciate it.
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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  chjbr63 on 4/19/2013, 12:23 am

Sandbags yes but just putting sand would not work to well.
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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  chjbr63 on 4/19/2013, 12:31 am

One piece of this might do the trick
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Vigoro-4-ft-Flexible-Garden-Edging-8748V/203894596#.UXDIbtczZWs
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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  tdang on 4/19/2013, 12:37 am

Hey that's actually a good idea! I can try to find thin, free plywood also! Since my plants have been fairing fine for the past month and have been growing vigorously, do you think they'd be alright without it though? It's been raining quite a bit but they're still growing!
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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  landarch on 4/19/2013, 12:53 am

What do you have planted? If it's cool season stuff, maybe harvest when you need to then move the garden before starting warm season stuff.

If you want to leave the garden where it is for now, you could do a simple gravel sump connected to 4" drain tile (flexible black plastic pipe from Home Depot or Lowes)...you would have to trench the pipe in and hopefuly find a lower spot in the yard to daylight that isn't too far away.
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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  tdang on 4/19/2013, 1:00 am

Landarch, can you explain your second paragraph in layman terms please? Lol sorry, I've no idea how your method looks. Also, I have my warm season crops right now, so Id rather not move it unless I truly truly must.
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Re: Please help this new gardener with his puddle problem

Post  landarch on 4/19/2013, 8:38 am

you can probably go to youtube and google "french drain" and see what others have done...it's basically a shallow trench, plastic drain pipe, surrounded by gravel, and covered with landscape fabric.

The video that looks simple is called "Draining excess water from your lawn".
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