How to Build a Raised Vegetable Bed: Part I

Raised gardens seem to be all the rage these days. It’s no wonder. Aside from the ergonomic benefits (depending on how high you raise it), you’ve got a nice border to keep out weeds. And there are so many stylish things you can do with the bed itself, as well as your placement of your beds and pathways running through them.

I decided on raised beds because I didn’t know what else to do with my dance floor. My then-fiance had built a dance floor for our wedding out of 2×6 boards, each about 16 feet in length. I decided this year that the third year anniversary must be the wood (or maybe tomato?) anniversary.

The framing has taken maybe a half hour per bed. We decided four-foot square boxes would be the optimal size, so that by sitting on the corner of one bed you could reach entirely across it … although we also factored in the convenience factor of knowing each board would become one veggie bed. Chris used the skill saw to turn each board into four 4-foot sections.

Pilot HolesNext, I measured a line across one end of each board about an inch down from the end. Using that as a guide, I used the drill press to put three holes within that guide. Once I had four boards pre-drilled, I squared them up with the help of a 90-degree clamp, placing the pre-drilled holes flush against the end of the next board.

I used the cordless drill to drill through my pilot holes then sank in the screws. By this point most of the boards have warped, so I can’t say this is timeless construction, but since they’re not pressure-treated either, I’m just shooting to keep them around for a couple years. With that limit in mind, I opted not to lay 2x4s on top as a seating ledge, because I have other ways in mind to jazz up the look of this simple frame.

Vegetable Bed Construction

Chicken Wire and Weed ControlSince we have voles building a subterranean metropolis beneath our backyard, Chris stapled a chicken wire screen to the bottom of each box. Beneath the wire he added a layer of landscaping fabric to keep out any weeds.

We’re four boxes in, two more to go. Once they’re complete, I’m going to add a coat of stain to match the fence and deck. Then, at long last, comes the most important step: filling the beds.

Raised Vegetable Beds



One response to “How to Build a Raised Vegetable Bed: Part I

  1. Pingback: How to Build a 20-Foot Veggie Wall | Blooming Oasis

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