Raised beds and growing in 100% compost question

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by eb, Apr 30, 2004.

  1. eb

    eb Well-Known Member

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    Hi folks...I have two seperate, but related questions....

    First off, I want to build some raised beds this year because my soil is just so bad, never drains well and is clay and rock mostly. I have a 50x40 regular garden, but can't increase the size much, so I want to add a bunch of raised beds on top of the lawn....

    Questions: I have a surplus of non-PT 2x8's (used from a demoltion project) that I want to use...is 8 inches deep, deep enough? Mostly peppers, eggplants tomatos and lettuce will be in the raised beds this year....

    Also, since my soil is so bad, I was going to order a truckload of organic compost...can I just fill the beds with the compost and grow in that, or do I actually need to have some "dirt" too?

    When I build the raised beds (4'x8' long) can I just line the bottom with newspaper or something to kill the grass before I fill the boses with the compost and/or soil? or do I need to excavate under the boxes too (this would be hard, lots of ledge and poor soil under where the boxes are going to go...).

    Thanks all!

    -Eb
     
  2. goatlady

    goatlady Well-Known Member Supporter

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    eb, I started with 2 x 10s which worked fine for my tomatoes and peppers and everything else. After a few years I just added another board on top of the existing as every year I add compost. I filled my boxes with "pure" compost and there's nothing better. Most folks can't get enough compost to be able to do that though. I laid my boxes on grass but I put town at least 2 layers of paper feed sacks and 50# dog food bags first with the outside edges of the bags outside the boards. Then add your fill, water, plant, water, and enjoy. Where are you going to get a truckload of organic compost? I hope you don't mean aged manure! Big difference you know.
     

  3. eb

    eb Well-Known Member

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    Sep 14, 2003
    This is where I was going to get the compost....

    http://www.holidayfarm.com/products.html

    But what is the "big" difference between aged manure and organic compost that I should be aware of?
     
  4. CJ

    CJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    What's wrong with growing in straight aged manure? I had a friend out here who did her beds in nothing but aged manure and she had gorgeous veggies, gorgeous!