Today I’m going to show you how to build raised garden beds. It’s an easy DIY that will last you years to come and create the perfect environment for your fruits, vegetables, & herbs. This tutorial makes two 3ft wide by 6ft long, and 12” tall with 6 balusters that you can attach chicken wire to for pest control. You can make additional ones if you would like, just take that into account with your material.
When we purchased our first home almost a year ago there was this odd shaped hole in the backyard that we suspect was a koi pond at some point. Our land is pretty slopped and has lots of boulders limiting any machinery getting to the backyard so filling in this huge hole was a pain to do manually.
Well almost a year later and it is 3/4 of the way filled in and I can put a few garden beds on one side! We got a huge sand delivery last year and slowly over the months we have pushed and pulled a wheelbarrow up and down our property loaded with as much sand as we could handle. Long story long, this is where my garden beds will be going. It is the area that gets the most sunlight and I’m excited that I finally get set up my garden beds where that old pond was.
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What Type Of Wood Should You Use For Raised Garden Beds
Cedar is the best option because it is naturally rot & termite resistant. You don’t want to use treated wood because the chemicals can leach into your soil and into your fruits & vegetables.
Benefits Of Raised Beds
- You are in control of your soil quality
- Your plants are able to have deeper roots
- There will be less weeds
- Easy to pest proof
- Raised beds prevent your plants from being stepped on
- You can put raised beds anywhere
- Gardening will be easier on your back
- Raised beds are beautiful
- More upfront cost for materials
- Harder to move once they are filled up with soil/compost
- More manual labor to build the beds & fill up with soil/compost
Materials You Will Need To Build Raised Garden Beds
- Miter saw
- Measuring tape
- Six 1”x6”x12ft cedar boards (I had Lowes cut all six of these board in half because the 6ft boards were out of stock.)
- 12 cedar 2”x2”x48” square baluster
- Box of 2” exterior galvanized spiral shank nails
Raised garden beds should be a minimum of 12” deep. If you aren’t wanting to keep the tall balusters to attach chicken wire for pest control, you can cut your balusters into twelve 12” pieces so they will be flush with your boards. In this case you will only need three square balusters instead of the original twelve.
Steps For How To Build Raised Garden Beds
Using your miter saw, measure out 3 ft on four of your 6ft boards and make those cuts. These will be the shorter pieces for the end. You will have eight 3 ft pieces once you’re finished.
If you don’t have a miter saw, you can also have Lowes or Home Depot make these cuts for you.
Lay out three of your balusters and nail two of your 6 ft boards into the balusters right next to each other at the top. You will want to make sure they are lined up at the very ends and one directly in the middle at 3 ft. Use two nails at each point where the 6 ft board is attaching to the baluster.
Once you stand them upright, these will be the frames for your garden beds.
Repeat those same steps three more times. You will have four identical frames for the garden beds.
Have someone hold one of your frames upright. Nail two of your 3 ft boards into the baluster making a 90 degree angle at the end of your baluster. Repeat this process on the other end. Then slide in another one of your frames in between your 3 ft boards on the opposite side and finish attaching with your nails. All of your boards should be nailed into your balusters.
Repeat those steps for your second bed.
Soil can add up very quickly so we found it cheapest to get a delivery from a local business. We got a soil & compost mixture and it was very affordable even with a small delivery fee. As for your cedar, you can check any local lumber companies and price out what would be the cheapest. Here in NH, the local companies didn’t carry cedar so Lowes was my only choice.
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Thank you for reading & if you try this DIY, make sure to take a picture and tag me on Instagram! @our1sthomestead
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Until next time,