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My first beds. Not sure where to place them

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My first beds. Not sure where to place them

Post  retired member 2 on 3/26/2011, 11:22 pm

i am making my first 3 SFG beds and am not sure where I should put them. Near the house I have vrey little topsoil. We live on a hill and there is about 1/2 inch soil then it is slate. There is no shade at all. I have another choice but it is quite a distance from the house. It is flat, and near a stream. In the years I had a regular garden, I never had to water even in a drought. Had a lot of trouble though, with coons that near a creek. Tore the garden up. Which would be better? I think that if I put it near the house where there is no shade I could probably employ some shade of some sort. The temps get in the high 90's and can be pretty dry in the height of the summer season. If I put it on the hill near the house there is no way I am getting rebar in the ground for the trellis. I will have to clamp the conduit to the outside of the frame with clamps. You would need a jack hammer to get through the slate. Same with any supports for shadecloth. This hill has always been such a challenge for growing stuff on. I have a few tradtional raised beds but keeping them moist and everything from wilting has always been a huge problem.

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Re: My first beds. Not sure where to place them

Post  milaneyjane on 3/26/2011, 11:37 pm

That is a tough one. But I think once you battle the building issues (I am sure there are some on this forum that could offer suggestions) you would be happier having it closer to the house. Racoons are the last garden pest I would want to battle----they are way too smart and you would be forever waging war with them. If you built near the house you would just have to worry about watering.
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Re: My first beds. Not sure where to place them

Post  Megan on 3/26/2011, 11:45 pm

I vote for near the house. With raised beds filled with Mel's Mix, you do not need to be concerned with the thickness of your topsoil. You might be able to stretch some shadecloth if sunshine is a problem? For supports, maybe you could use a covered wagon approach where the shadecloth is laid onto 1/2" pvc that is held into shape by your boxes. Maybe a few simple conduit clamps to keep it still. Just an idea... hopefully we will have more comments here soon. And welcome! glad you\'re here
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Re: My first beds. Not sure where to place them

Post  Chopper on 3/27/2011, 5:12 am

I agree with Megan. I am a near the house voter. If only for convenience and the thrill of stepping out the back door and grabbing the veggies for dinner.

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Re: My first beds. Not sure where to place them

Post  Furbalsmom on 3/27/2011, 2:54 pm

clb58,

I also agree with Megan. Near the house, you will be more likely to visit every day and maybe several times a day. Even though there is not a lot of maintanence required once the beds are built and filled with Mel's Mix, it is important to check on your plants and make sure there are no pests trying to have their way with your crops. You will also need to help your vining crops attach and grow up your trellis.

Covered wagon or dome supports can be used for shade cloth or deer netting to help keep varmints out of your box. They can also be used to extend your season a bit if you cover them with plastic to create a hoop house or unheated green house.

Trellises are another matter, you can use the conduit clamps, but understand, they are not as strong and secure as using rebard to support the trellis. You may need to add guy wires from the trellis to the opposite side or the box or something similar as additional support. Check your book ALL NEW SQUARE FOOT GARDENING, chapter 8, for additional clarification on trellises.
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Re: My first beds. Not sure where to place them

Post  Furbalsmom on 3/27/2011, 4:28 pm

@Furbalsmom wrote:Trellises are another matter, you can use the conduit clamps, but understand, they are not as strong and secure as using rebard to support the trellis. You may need to add guy wires from the trellis to the opposite side or the box or something similar as additional support. Check your book ALL NEW SQUARE FOOT GARDENING, chapter 8, for additional clarification on trellises.

I really should proofread befroe before I hit send.

I meant to say, conduit clamps are not as strong and secure as using REBAR to support the threllis.
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Re: My first beds. Not sure where to place them

Post  Megan on 3/27/2011, 4:34 pm

Good point, FB. I still think the added trouble of stringing guy wires is far preferable to a long hike and close proximity to coons, though!
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