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planning ahead for next year

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planning ahead for next year

Post  drixnot on 5/23/2013, 2:14 am

I can't sleep so I figured I can mess around planning for next year

I'm going to build actual boxes instead of using the tiny cement mixing tubs and random planters I have now (only about 14 squares). I've messed around with them learning about stuff enough, time to get real. I've learned that I don't like my boxes on the ground ... I have to bend over too much and I'm not getting any younger.

With that in mind here is what I came up with


I'm pretty sure the buckets can hold the weight since I have seen large men stand on them (please tell me if I'm wrong!) and at 3 dollars each they are cheaper than the cinderblocks I've seen people using. 4 should be able to hold up the 250+ pounds of a watered 4x4 (someone else said that's how much they weigh.) I figure that getting the level of the soil 2 feet off the ground is just about the right height for me. Not too high and not too low.

So that's it... I must plan on having saved up about 6 cubic feet of high quality home brewed compost, track down 6 cubic feet of vermiculite and get 6 cubic feet of FLUFFED peat moss. Shouldn't be too hard or too expensive if I do everything a bit at a time.

Anyway I've rambled on enough, night all
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Re: planning ahead for next year

Post  Goosegirl on 5/23/2013, 6:12 am

I likes the plan! My only concern is the bucket placement. With 4 buckets placed as pictured, there may be too much stress on the corner joints from bowing with fully filled and watered boxes. With one additional bucket per box (by your calculations only $3 extra per box) you could eliminate this. Place one bucket under each corner and the 5th bucket under the center of the box.

GG
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Re: planning ahead for next year

Post  boffer on 5/23/2013, 9:43 am

You've done good planning for the middle of the night! Very Happy Your weight considerations are accurate.

Since you're not on a short time schedule, your building materials can be scrounged or purchased used from a Habitat for Humanity Re-Store, Craigslist, etc.

I wouldn't use less than ¾ inch plywood, CDX being the cheapest in my neck of the woods. It will cost more than $10 though.

I would recommend using 2x instead of 1x for the sides for the extra resistance to bowing and, if for no other reason, it will be a lot easier to screw to. A 2x6 is about the same price as the 1x8 in your materials list; a 2x8 a little more.

Keep us posted on your progress. For me, this the funnest part of SFG: an opportunity to re-use, re-purpose, or recycle 'stuff', and turn it into something functional to use in the garden.
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Re: planning ahead for next year

Post  yolos on 5/23/2013, 9:55 am

@boffer wrote:I wouldn't use less than ¾ inch plywood, CDX being the cheapest in my neck of the woods. It will cost more than $10 though.


Boffer - I have been doing a little thinking about experimenting with a raised bed. I have looked around in the big box stores but can't tell if the plywood is exterior grade. Is there a difference. What exactly do I ask for. I am not concerned too much about the difference in cost, just want some plywood (or other wood) that will last the longest.
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Re: planning ahead for next year

Post  boffer on 5/23/2013, 10:42 am

Exterior plywood uses exterior grade glue.

The first two letters grade the imperfections in the outer plies, 'A' being the best, 'D' is the worst. The first letter is the front side that is usually visible; the second letter is the back side which is usually not visible. The third letter 'X' denotes that an exterior glue has been used.

An interior plywood often doesn't have a third letter. If you wanted a pretty piece of plywood for an interior project where the backside doesn't show, a typical designation would be AC.

CDX is just downright ugly on both sides! But it's usually the cheapest choice when appearance doesn't matter. If you wanted something nice looking for outside, ACX is a good choice.

Last the longest? Marine plywood; big bucks. Next longest is pressure treated plywood. But then you have the preservative chemicals to consider. I recently paid $52 for a sheet of ¾ inch pressure treated for a non-gardening project. Personally, I can't justify that kind of money for a gardening project, and think that CDX or ACX works just fine for in the garden.
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Re: planning ahead for next year

Post  yolos on 5/23/2013, 11:51 am

Thank you for that information Boffer. Just what I needed.
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