What's the biggest gardening challenge you face?
So last year I began building a new raised bed garden. While I was at it, I planned to double my garden space. And I also wanted to do it on the smallest possible budget - preferably a zero budget.
I'm still working on the expansion project, because it has to be fit in among everything else. I'm using reclaimed lumber to build the new beds, and I've found that the most difficult part is filling them. With my zero-dollar budget, I can't just go buy bags and bags of soil for each raised bed. So I'm composting like crazy and also scooping the black dirt from the old goat yard without making a big hole in the ground.
Last fall's leaves waiting to be added to the compost pile.
Raised beds lend themselves well to square foot gardening. Mel Bartholomew's book Square Foot Gardening (affiliate link) explains it all. Since I'm using a defined rectangular area in each bed - usually 4 feet by 8 feet - it's a simple matter to divide that space into squares and plant each one according to the square foot gardening method.
Here you can see the cabbage I grew last year.
The rest of the bed needs to be dug out, then I'll replace the cardboard and refill it with compost and soil. I'll bury the clumps of barn pack deep in my compost pile. This bed will hold my tomatoes and peppers this year.
Do you use the square garden or lasagna garden methods? Or maybe both?
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