Since I was setting up my garden by myself, and had limited time before I needed to plant, I took the easy route of ordering my square foot gardens from Mel’s website www.squarefootgardening.com. Since I live in Utah, they were kind enough to arrange a pickup, which saved me shipping costs. Here is what I paid:
- $75.95 per 4×4 vinyl box, including weed mat, posts, rails, caps, and grid. This included a 5% volume discount, since I ordered three.
- $28.45 per tomato tower, including rebar, pipes, connectors, and nylon netting. This also included a 5% volume discount, since I ordered three.
- $4.95 handling fee
The total cost (purchased April 2007) was $318.17 for 3 garden boxes with tomato towers, $106 each.
Putting this together was easy as pie! I did some major preparation (dug out sod, moved sprinkler heads, etc.), but that isn’t always necessary. To assemble, I just snapped the rails into the posts, put caps on top of the posts, and the boxes were made. I put down the weed mat, laid down the box, and was ready to fill it up. Once I had filled with Mel’s Mix (see other post), I built the grids by laying them out and using the snaps that came with them to hold it all together.
The tomato towers were equally easy to assemble. First I put it together with the corner connectors and a screwdriver. Then I pounded the rebar halfway into the dirt, and set the tower over the rebar. A push on each corner shoved it a little ways into the ground, and it was stable. Then I tied on the nylon netting.
I want to emphasize how EASY this was, but it was also probably the most expensive way to build. I have plans to double my gardens this year (add the equivalent of 3 more boxes), and I’ll make them myself. Once I do, I’ll post the costs here.
As a side note, I have found the nylon netting at Home Depot for less than $3.00 for a 6’x10′ piece (or something like that).