We put in raised beds this weekend. It was so much fun and they look great! My sister and I went and bought materials on Friday. We also rented a HUGE rototiller. When we went to pick it up, the guys at the rental place kept asking if we'd have men there to help unload it. We figured it was because we were female and on the smaller side. When they went to load it, two of them couldn't do it. It took a third guy to help. They weren't kidding - we were going to need several guys to unload it.
On Saturday, I got John to till for me. This is the finished tilled area.
John then measured out the boards (with his helper). Our beds our 8 feet by 4 feet, so we used 8 foot 2x6s. He also anchored them on the corners about 8 inches into the ground.
Here, John cut the boards. He wants me to mention not to use him as an example for safety.
Putting them together - again with help.
Beds set in the garden.
Me actually working. We got bulk potting soil(actually borrowed it from my mother-in-law) and composted horse manure to fill the beds in with.
The finished product!!
We planted mums in the front of the bed to add a little color. We also planted the seedlings I had started - tomatoes, pumpkin, broccoli, beets, lettuce, and collards. We planted seeds of (more) pumpkin, three squash varieties, two pea varieties, turnips, rutabagas, mustard, carrots, and radishes. I started some cabbages in seedling trays. We have tomatoes in the earth box and we still have more tomatoes to plant.
As you can see, we have two beds and then rows in the ground in back. We decided to start small with the beds to see if they work for us. I put the vining vegetables (squash, pumpkin, peas) in the rows in back to give them more room.
We also mulched with some of our yard trash (FYN principle #4). We had a pine tree come down recently and we still had a bunch of pine bark and yard trash on the ground. I used that and oak leaves to start filling in around the beds and in between the rows. I'm going to get some old hay from the barn to fill in the rest.
Check out our Raised Bed Gardening in a Minute show. It's got a lot more links and info about gardening with raised beds. Which by the way, I already love! It looks great and I'm hoping it keeps the weeds down.