Square Foot Gardening Forum

Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.


Search
 
 

Display results as :
 

 


Rechercher Advanced Search

Latest topics
» Comfrey
by CapeCoddess Today at 10:25 am

» New from OK City
by phoeg Today at 10:24 am

» Hello all
by BeetlesPerSqFt Today at 10:11 am

» Bryan Greenbeard of Minnesota's 2017 Plans
by BeetlesPerSqFt Today at 10:08 am

» Anyone in SE Idaho or near by?
by BeetlesPerSqFt Today at 9:56 am

» Making Smoothies
by RoOsTeR Today at 9:03 am

» CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in March 2017
by trolleydriver Today at 8:25 am

» Hello from Southeast Michigan!
by AtlantaMarie Today at 8:14 am

» 1st SFG Plan - Any thoughts?
by AtlantaMarie Today at 8:11 am

» It's Fertilizer Time; Fruit Trees Down South!
by sanderson Today at 1:10 am

» Senseless Banter...
by sanderson Today at 1:08 am

» 2017 SFG in Brooks, Ga
by sanderson Today at 1:06 am

» Northern California & Coastal Valleys - What are you doing this month?
by sanderson Today at 12:57 am

» New For 2017
by countrynaturals Today at 12:39 am

» N & C Midwest: March 2017 Brink of Spring
by CitizenKate Yesterday at 11:54 pm

» Hello from MN
by ralitaco Yesterday at 11:40 pm

» New England March 2017
by Scorpio Rising Yesterday at 7:27 pm

» How's the Weather Where You're At?
by Scorpio Rising Yesterday at 6:55 pm

» Dragon Fruit!
by kauairosina Yesterday at 5:41 pm

» Raised beds already made.
by jimmy cee Yesterday at 9:32 am

» GF Books
by CapeCoddess Yesterday at 7:16 am

» Rolling Boxes
by sanderson Yesterday at 4:36 am

» Need another type of compost.
by ralitaco 3/25/2017, 8:56 pm

» Ground Cherries
by countrynaturals 3/25/2017, 8:42 pm

» Other Gardening Books!
by Scorpio Rising 3/25/2017, 8:25 pm

» Tomato Mystery Mix
by Ginger Blue 3/25/2017, 7:15 pm

» Carrot Week 2017!
by donnainzone5 3/25/2017, 5:14 pm

» California's Drought
by sanderson 3/25/2017, 4:10 pm

» Third Year SFG in Canada
by sanderson 3/25/2017, 3:25 pm

» Squares under siege... by grass!
by has55 3/25/2017, 1:05 pm

Google

Search SFG Forum

New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

View previous topic View next topic Go down

New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  donnainzone5 on 5/19/2014, 6:32 pm

The two 2' x 4' x 12" boxes I had made last spring are already rotting.  

Would it be safe (and appropriate) to switch these out to use as berry beds (raspberries and/or blackberries?).  Or should I just toss them out?
avatar
donnainzone5

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 2039
Join date : 2010-03-02
Age : 69
Location : Bend, OR (Zone 5-6)

View user profile http://www.amway.com/DonnaKBecker

Back to top Go down

Re: New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  Triciasgarden on 5/19/2014, 7:41 pm

If it were me, I would just keep using it until it falls apart.
avatar
Triciasgarden

Female Posts : 1628
Join date : 2010-06-04
Age : 62
Location : Northern Utah

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  Marc Iverson on 5/20/2014, 2:02 am

Me too. Almost all the beds I'm planting in were made many years ago, but until the soil starts leaking out, they're still good enough for me. Of course, I don't care what they look like, so that factors into things. If they were super pretty in the first place, or in a front yard, I might feel differently.

What kind of wood did you use, and how thick?
avatar
Marc Iverson

Male Posts : 3636
Join date : 2013-07-05
Age : 55
Location : SW Oregon

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  donnainzone5 on 5/20/2014, 11:47 am

The wood used to construct the boxes was supposed to be Douglas Fir, although I suspect that my handyman actually purchased pine.  It's 1" thick.

My main concern is whether the rot/mold/whatever could infect the Mel's Mix and/or plants.
avatar
donnainzone5

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 2039
Join date : 2010-03-02
Age : 69
Location : Bend, OR (Zone 5-6)

View user profile http://www.amway.com/DonnaKBecker

Back to top Go down

Re: New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  Turan on 5/20/2014, 2:32 pm

The fir rots about the same as the pine.  For longer lasting beds you need to use cedar or redwood.  Aside from that, the rot is the same as that in your compost already.  In fact your MM is a great source of fungi etc to rot your wood.  It won't hurt your plants.

____________________________

Find more about Weather in Belgrade, MT
Click for weather forecast
avatar
Turan

Female Posts : 2029
Join date : 2012-03-29
Location : Gallatin Valley, Montana, Intermountain zone 4

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  Marc Iverson on 5/20/2014, 2:49 pm

People use wood all the time as mulch, which never stops rotting till it's totally gone, so I don't know why it would hurt. If either pine or Douglas fir were toxic, you wouldn't have been using it in the first place, and wood rot is always with us, sometimes even on purpose. Probably everybody's wood is always in some stage of rotting, but I haven't heard of it doing anybody harm.

Even nitrogen tied up by the rotting shouldn't be that big a deal.
avatar
Marc Iverson

Male Posts : 3636
Join date : 2013-07-05
Age : 55
Location : SW Oregon

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  donnainzone5 on 5/20/2014, 3:38 pm

Thanks, Marc and Turan!
avatar
donnainzone5

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 2039
Join date : 2010-03-02
Age : 69
Location : Bend, OR (Zone 5-6)

View user profile http://www.amway.com/DonnaKBecker

Back to top Go down

Re: New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  CapeCoddess on 5/21/2014, 8:54 pm

Hmmm...this makes me wonder, what if we use 12 inch high wood for our boxes, fill it only 6 inches with MM, then once the bottom half has rotted, flip the box over and fill it 6 inches. would that work?

CC
avatar
CapeCoddess

Posts : 5639
Join date : 2012-05-20
Age : 61
Location : elbow of the Cape, MA, Zone 6b/7a

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  Kelejan on 5/22/2014, 2:56 pm

@CapeCoddess wrote:Hmmm...this makes me wonder, what if we use 12 inch high wood for our boxes,  fill it only 6 inches with MM, then once the bottom half has rotted, flip the box over and fill it  6 inches.  would that work?

CC

It wouldn't look pretty. Also if you use twine anchored to the top of the box it would be hard to attach.

I use my rotting boxes as containers for composting. Makes quite  a good 4 x 4 x 4, my boxes are 8 inches deep.
avatar
Kelejan

Female Posts : 4756
Join date : 2011-04-24
Age : 82
Location : Castlegar, British Columbia

View user profile http://www.castlegarinkspot.ca

Back to top Go down

Re: New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  donnainzone5 on 5/22/2014, 3:33 pm

Hmmm....

Perhaps I should stick with my original plan to make these beds out of cinder block and use the wooden boxes for composting purposes.
avatar
donnainzone5

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 2039
Join date : 2010-03-02
Age : 69
Location : Bend, OR (Zone 5-6)

View user profile http://www.amway.com/DonnaKBecker

Back to top Go down

Re: New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  Marc Iverson on 5/22/2014, 5:07 pm

My neighbor swears by his cinder block planters, and while they aren't as postcard-pretty as some wooden boxes are, they're wonderfully sturdy. He grows the best and most tomatoes in the neighborhood, and he thinks one reason that is so is that the cinder blocks moderate the temperature inside his beds. They retain heat and radiate it out at night, which helps his plants deal with nights that can drop down into the 50's even in the middle of record-hot summers. They also retain cold from the night before, which helps moderate our intense summer heat. We can have prolonged periods in which it is too cold at night for the tomatoes to set fruit at night and too hot for them to set fruit during the day. He never has that problem even though there is no shade anywhere near his garden, giving him the whole day's sun.

And, of course, they'll never rot.
avatar
Marc Iverson

Male Posts : 3636
Join date : 2013-07-05
Age : 55
Location : SW Oregon

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  Yardslave on 5/23/2014, 4:50 pm

I'd like to point out that Douglas Fir is a species of pine, and is not much different from the white pine, spruce, Ponderosa, Southern yellow pine,and Monterey pine wood available commercially, either as boards or plywood- Their densities and grains will vary, but all are prone to rotting with a lifespan for an untreated pine board is typically 5 years. Building a box with 2" versus the typical 5/8" thick boards can increase the box's life a little. Latex paint or Linseed oil finishing pine wood isn't toxic and can increase the life of the wood by repelling moisture. The resins in ceder and redwood are both water, and soil-borne rot resistant making those two the materials of choice. Expensive composite decking materials don't rot, and last longer than any wood, but are too pliable to hold back the weight of more than 5" of wet soil (it bows a lot) and requires special screws, as nails don't work on it. As I see it, if you don't want to rebuild, just wall up the perimeter of the bed with cinder blocks and wait for the wood to give out. That way you won't have to even bother removing the soil and boards, they are composting away in the soil.
avatar
Yardslave

Male Posts : 277
Join date : 2012-01-19
Age : 66
Location : Carmel Valley, Ca.

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: New Plantings in Rotting Wooden Boxes?

Post  Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top


 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum