Help to build a raised bed

hello everyone i was wondering if u could help me decide which way t
build a raised bed. i dont want to use pressure treated lumber because i am going to b using this bed for veggies but i do want to use some kind of timber. i was wondering if anyone can tell me what they used for their walls. this is going to be an interesting project i have never done thi before. i would like to build the walls about 2 to 3 feet high and go about or 5 feet wide and around 15 to 20 feet at least long. some things i was wondering is do u kill off the grass below and the remove it or do u build right over the grassed area after u kill i off? the base im building on is sandy clay loam and the grass is reall cut short. also would u put landscape fabric below your box to stop any weeds fro working up through? any help that anyone could give me would be really greatly appreciated thanks everyone. cyaaaaa, sockiescat:)
-- sockiescat
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sockiescat wrote:

When I built my raised beds, I mowed as low as the mower would go, and then came in with a string trimmer to scalp what was left. I also lined the bottom of the bed with 8-12 layers of newspaper. You might also consider edging before putting up the walls. I've edged, and I've not edged. When I didn't edge, I would get a few blades of grass growing up the inside edge of the bed. Even with edging that occasionally happens. I haven't really decided whether the effort was worth it or not. Either way, it hasn't been that big of a deal.
When you fill your beds, keep in mind that 2 to 3 feet of soil is going to settle, and it's going to settle quite a bit if there is a lot of organic components in it. Don't be surprised to see it compress to half it's original height after about six months.
I would build the bed in late summer, early enough so it has about two months to settle some before the leaves fall. Then top it off with a big mound of shredded leaves for the winter. Come early spring, much of the shredded leaf mulch will be significantly decomposed. Remove what isn't, top off the bed with more soil, and mix it up. (Don't get too wild. You don't want to over mix and destroy any structure that the mix has.) I also mix in some blood meal and bone meal.
If your raised bed is going to be less than a foot deep, I'd change the plan, and before putting down the newspaper, I'd keep scalping the grass until it stopped coming back, and then till down a foot before putting down the layered newspaper.
You could also substitute a couple of layers of corrugated cardboard, or three or four layers of plain cardboard. Stay away from cardboard with any kind of waxy finish like they use for frozen food boxes. And with newspaper, stay away from the glossy ads.
--
Warren H.

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g'day sockiescat,
i have some illustrations of how we do raised beds on our web site got to the building a garden page.
then link to http://ausgarden.com and go to the edible garden section in the main menu or they are featured on the front page right now and see our latest working project.
On Sat, 19 Aug 2006 16:25:43 +0100, sockiescat
snipped With peace and brightest of blessings,
len
-- "Be Content With What You Have And May You Find Serenity and Tranquillity In A World That You May Not Understand."
http://www.gardenlen.com
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sockiescat wrote:

I used new pressure treated (non-arsenic) 2x6's for the sides and ends, pressure treated 2x4's to make stakes for the ends and the middles, and 16d nails to hold it all together. I don't remember, but I don't think the nails were galvanized. The new pressure treated wood is supposed to be very corrosive to nails, but mine haven't rusted out yet after 3 years. I'm gonna retire one one of the beds this winter when I clean up the garden, it'll interesting to see what the nails look like when I tear it down.
Bob
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sockiescat wrote:

If your beds really are 2 to 3 ft high and you fill them it does not matter what you do the grass. It will never be able to push through 3 feet of compost. For that kind of height you may not be able to easily rebuild the beds. I suggest cinder blocks with metal stakes.
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simy1 sockiescat wrote:-
hello everyone i was wondering if u could help me decide which way to build a raised bed. i dont want to use pressure treated lumber because i am going to be using this bed for veggies but i do want to use some kind of timber. i was wondering if anyone can tell me what they used for their walls. this is going to be an interesting project i have never done this before. i would like to build the walls about 2 to 3 feet high and go about 4 or 5 feet wide and around 15 to 20 feet at least long. some things i was wondering is do u kill off the grass below and then remove it or do u build right over the grassed area after u kill it off? the base im building on is sandy clay loam and the grass i really cut short. also would u put landscape fabric below your box to stop any weed from working up through? any help that anyone could give me would be really greatl appreciated. thanks everyone.-
If your beds really are 2 to 3 ft high and you fill them it does not matter what you do the grass. It will never be able to push through 3 feet of compost. For that kind of height you may not be able t easily rebuild the beds. I suggest cinder blocks with metal stakes.
len the idea of using straw as a border is great and since we do hav our own straw i am considering trying that it would be neat to see ho things turn out. i am also going to follow a lot of what everyone here has suggested : then i will have the experience of using both ideas ;). so wish me luc everyone and again thanks so much for your wonderful ideas an information it will all be put to great use:). cyaaaa, sockiescat:)
-- sockiescat
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