Friday, May 13, 2011

Thursday's Tip from the Green Housewife - Use Scrap Wood to Build a Raised Bed

This year I've started my first ever vegetable garden. My husband's Aunt Jill was dropping off some extra seeds at our house, and after seeing how many gopher's we have, recommended that we build a raised bed. I am determined at some point to try to get rid of the little buggers in some humanitarian way, but for this Spring, a raised bed was the only reasonable solution.
       The first step was to clear a level area for the raised bed to be put on.

       Then my wonderful husband Pete built me the bed. We went to Home Depot and spent 20$ on chicken wire and nails, and our gardening budget was 20$. Then we looked at wood and saw that it was going to be 60$ for good pine wood for a 4'by 8' bed.  The cheaper wood would have been at least 25$, which was still more than we wanted to spend. We decided to ask the nursery which owns the property we rent if we could use wood from their scrap pile, and they said it would be fine. Pete had  to go to a lot of work to nail some boards together in random ways, but the finished result was great! He saved us at least 25$, and saved some trees at the same time. I am in love :). 

These are all the plants I have planted so far - I have some growing inside in Dixie cups that are too fragile to plant just yet. I also need to put in more dirt, which I am going to do next week when I get some horse manure from our friends the Werners. So far we have onions, zucchini, cucumbers, tomatoes, and oregano, with some carrots, cantaloupe, basil, and more tomatoes and cucumbers to come!

Here's a close up of the zucchini:

And the onions:

What are your green or frugal gardening tips?


  1. When we lived in an apartment I grew tomatoes and peppers in buckets on the balcony. You can go to your local supermarket bakery and ask if they have icing buckets they're getting rid of. Most bakeries will give them to you free because they just put them in the trash. I got 3 gallon and 5 gallon buckets. I get them now to store food in. I just have to wash them out with hot soapy water...They're great for storing food like rice and sugar. They come with a nice rubber seal lid.
    Your garden looks great. Wood is so expensive you were smart to reuse some that was going to waste.

  2. Patti Bee - that is a great idea - I may do that for storing food!

  3. That's a lovely garden bed!

  4. Sarah - thanks! My husband did a great job!

  5. The garden is looking lovely. Unfortunately I've planted very little so far because we are still getting more rain than sunshine.

  6. Joyful - that is the fortunate thing about living in San Diego - it doesn't rain that much, which makes gardening easy!

  7. Yes, I guess it does ;-) I like the rain though. It is refreshing and it keeps everything so nice and green here. I just don't like it when we get soooo much rain. This year we've had a lot but am still tahnkful as things could be so much worse.


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