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How would you slowly convert large garden to SFG?

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How would you slowly convert large garden to SFG?

Post  milaneyjane on 3/18/2010, 5:48 pm

I have three large gardens---space is definately not an issue. I would like to slowly convert to SFG's. Our gardens are also what you see outside from the entire house, so I want it to be asthetically pleasing. How would you suggest I start the layout? I would like to experiment this year with 3-4 boxes this year and see what I like before I convert over 100%. I am looking at longer boxes. I am also debating what to put inbetween the boxes for a pathway, especially since we are not going to all SFG yet. Last year we put down some mulch chips and I shutter at the cost of doing that large of an area. We plant a huge variety of vegetables for a family of five and for freezing, so I want to garden as much of the area as possible. We are in MN, and the site is on a slope.

I have posted pictures of what the garden starts out as each spring and what it looks like as things are growing. The trellis and rows of annual flowers in front will remain. The large garden at the top of the hill will probably not be converted. At this point I would like to start with a section in the Western garden (labeled in photos) since it is 100% sun. Not sure how to start thought. I am thinking I should work my way out from the arbor area. I am anxious to get started. Any ideas???????? http://photobucket.com/rmb5


Rebecca
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milaneyjane

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Re: How would you slowly convert large garden to SFG?

Post  choksaw on 3/18/2010, 6:09 pm

I envy your yard omg

well conversion of such a large space may be a bit costlyi would first decide what part i want to begin with on that western slope. Depending on what type of materials you use for the box construction and how handy or inovative/creative you can be will be the determining factors of the look of the garden.

something like yours i would build my general beds from lumber trying to contour to the land as much as possable but not a major issue after the boxs are built and in place i would get some walling rocks (the type used to make a retaining wall etc.) and stack them around the box the rocks will conceal the wood from distant view and make your garden very pleasing to see and they will also be able to fill in any imperfections the wood may have with the contour of the land also helping to keep the mix in the box rather then falling out the bottom where gaps may be.

For paths with a design like above some black plastic for weed control and river rocks would look awesome maybe a small arbor for an entrance way into your garden. Maybe even put a few decorative chairs around a centerpiece for a sitting area with a small out door fire ring/pit the thoughts are endless lol.


I could see myself spending a fortune on my garden if i had the space that you have and with the thoughts that keep rolling around in my head it would all be worth it (provided it all turned out good lol)

p.s. as long as you use natural wood in the fire ring the ashs make a great compost additive heehee
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Re: How would you slowly convert large garden to SFG?

Post  milaneyjane on 3/18/2010, 10:27 pm

That's the problem....the cost would be insane (hence why I am starting very small). I wish I would win the lottery. I was wondering how it would work if I put the boxes in slight tier or step up (with space between the tiers.) Right now I am dealing with some soil erosion and the long row of irises holds the soil from going down over the blocks so I was thinking of placing the boxes running parallel to the retaining blocks. I even debated just planting grass between the boxes, but the thought of weed trimming up against and around all the boxes does not sound ideal.

Rebecca
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Re: How would you slowly convert large garden to SFG?

Post  choksaw on 3/19/2010, 12:24 pm

a tier set up would work very well i would reccomend not going any wider then 4ft across though you might run into a problem reaching to the center of the boxs and the pathways between the boxs would give you easy acess but for those i would still suggest some form of weed barrier be it black plastic or weed guard to eliminate the need for weeding in between the boxs (did i ever mention how much i hate weeds lol) the options with your property are endless let your imagination run free (but stay inside your budget) another good idea may be to draw some diagrams or plans up and see what you think, mess around with photoshop or any image editing software befor you invest any money.
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Re: How would you slowly convert large garden to SFG?

Post  gridgardener on 3/19/2010, 1:24 pm

the cost is not insane you just need to know what the none essentials to a square foot garden is. compost and wood or sided beds is all that is really needed. the rest is optional. as for paths black weed cloth is all that is required.

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