Category Archives: Build
Carrie, a reader from Georgia shared the following story and pictures: I have 12, 4×4, SFG boxes and several border rows. We moved to North GA 4 years ago and built our Square Foot Garden. Two years ago, we moved homes to prepare for me to come home from work full time. The house across the street where we were moving became available at a more affordable rent. We hired a coupe of teenagers to help us dig the mix out of the boxes into wheel barrows, wheel the mix and boxes across the street, and set up our garden … Continue reading
Okay, this is embarrassing. I have been using grow lights to start my seeds indoors for years. I’ve done all sorts of things to hang the lights from the ceiling in my unfinished basement, including chains, ropes, and bungee cords. I’ve seen PVC frames, and keep meaning to build one. Well, I finally did, and guess what? It cost next to nothing! Don’t you hate it when you do that–put off doing something that in the end is so easy, cheap, and makes your life better? So here are the instructions and prices: Single Light with PVC Frame Supply List Shop … Continue reading
Soil is probably THE most important component of a successful garden. When it comes to soil, there are many options, each with it’s benefits and drawbacks. Here I will outline some soil choices, and you can pick the one that fits your situation. Use Your Own This is potentially the least expensive option for new gardeners. However, it also can be the most complicated and labor intensive. Pros Cons No cost for initial soil May need to test the soil May need additional amendments May contain weed seeds Labor intensive to prepare Straight Compost It may sound crazy, but you … Continue reading
I’ve had some questions and confusion about Mel’s Mix vs. my suggestion for Modified Mel’s Mix (My Mix) vs. other garden soil options. I’ve decided to write specifically about each choice. Go here to read about Mel’s Mix. My Mix This is the mix I use–on my site I’ve often referred to it as “modified Mel’s Mix.” 1 part peat moss 1 part vermiculite 2 parts compost (as many kinds as you can find) As with Mel’s Mix, avoid steer manure–it’s high in salt. I have found that My Mix has enough peat moss and vermiculite to make the soil … Continue reading
For some, traditional gardening is too labor intensive and physically demanding. Raised bed gardening, including square foot gardening, is a great solution. There is little hoeing, weeding, tilling, and toiling. However, those with physical limitations still find this to be very difficult. I have found a few sources of elevated gardening boxes–these are an ideal solution for the elderly, those in wheel chairs, and anyone who finds it difficult to bend while working at the garden. RTS Garden Table with Fixed Legs Found at Amazon.com Cedar Boxes with Legs From SquareFootGardening.com Instant Garden from EasyGardener.com Happy gardening!
Thanks to Thomas for the heads up on this opportunity to purchase raised beds at Sam’s Club. To see other options, check out these posts on buying vs. building garden beds, and a raised bed cost comparison. Happy gardening!
There are many options for watering your garden. Here are the pros and cons of each method. Bucket Here is the simplest method of watering your garden–a bucket of sun-warmed water with a cup or pitcher. This is what I use until I turn on my irrigation system. In his book, Mel Bartholemew suggests using a cup, and watering one cup per plant. That is a little too tedious for me, so I’ve upgraded to a pitcher. He recommends “sun-warmed” water because it gives the soil and plants a little heat boost, which is nice during cooler weather. Pros Cons … Continue reading
Vermiculite is an important ingredient of Mel’s Mix, the gardening soil I use in my square foot garden. It is particularly helpful for square foot, container, and raised bed gardens. Some of the most common questions I get asked about vermiculite are: What is it? Where can I buy it? Is it safe? Are there any substitutes? What is vermiculite? Vermiculite is a natural mineral. It starts off like mica–sort of a flaky rock. When heat is applied, it expands and becomes a light, fluffy, fire-resistant material. There are numerous uses for this product (like insulation), but here we’re using … Continue reading
After buying the supplies and building these myself, I have updated instructions on how to build tomato cages. The old way I suggested used zip ties, and required much less cutting. However, it required flattening out the remesh and rolling it the other direction, which was also a lot of work. In the end, I decided to go with the roll and cut, cut, cut. Supplies: Steel remesh–I found a roll of 5′x100′ for $100 at Home Depot Bolt cutters–$14 (smaller is better) It’s pretty expensive to tackle this on your own, especially if you don’t need 20 tomato cages. … Continue reading
Go here for the original post about buying vs. building cost comparison. For those of you who love Square Foot Gardening, or at least prefer to grow in raised garden beds, I have good news for you! There are more and more options when it comes to purchasing raised or square foot garden beds. Honestly, it’s VERY difficult to do an “apples to apples” comparison, but I’m going to try! I have found several online sources to purchase garden beds. SquareFootGardening.com HomeGardensToGo.com KareeLaneGardens.com Easy Garden Box Greenland Gardener Kit Frame It Garden Bed Suncast Garden Kit The last 4 are … Continue reading