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Old 02-25-2009, 08:48 PM
 
9,452 posts, read 24,606,084 times
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Here are some step by step pictures of how I put put together my square foot garden this past week. In the end I only used about half of the peat moss I purchased so I guess I didn't need to buy as much. I could have used more vermiculite to add to the mix, but it is the most expensive component and I skimped since I am on a tight budget. I will update with more pictures once I make the planting grid and install my seedlings.

Supply list

Two 2"x8"x8' boards (cut in half to make four 4' lengths)
Four 1 cubic bags of compost
One 3.8 cubic bag of peat moss
Two bags of vermiculite
Twelve 3" deck screws
Some old newspapers
One bale of twine (to make planting grid)
Total Cost = $50


Four 8" wide boards cut into 4' lengths to make the raised garden planting box


Measure out where to place deck screws to jhold boards togther (I sued thre screws set about 3/4" from the edge)


Pre-drill holes for deck screws


Put the boards together


View of garden box once put together


Find a location with good sun exposure (6-8 hours) to place the 4'x4' raised garden box rame


Soil Mixture (Compost / Peat Moss / Vermiculite)


I put news papers as a base to prevent weed and grass growing up into the bed


I crushed up some leaves I saved from the fall since they will decompose and make a nice nutrient rich base (optional)


Next I mixed the three planting materials on a tarp starting with Compost first


Then Peat Moss


Then Vericulite


After mixing it all together shovel it into the 4'x4' frame


Voila!
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Old 02-26-2009, 08:20 AM
 
Location: snow-free city
161 posts, read 388,402 times
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Wow you had a great garden for 1 box. Can you share your layout with us? And did you use any trellises? I can't believe you were able to grow all those veggies in 1 garden. Didn't the Bush beans, squash, and zucchini need a lot of space?
***

Sorry, it was my 1st time doing this so I didn't even think about take any pics. I bought the Square Garden book (green cover) by Mel Bartholomeo(?) and did spring, summer & fall planting times so it didn't all go in at once. There is a color page example to show what to plant & how many per square-very helpful. The squash & zucchini is one per square, the bush beans were 8 or 9 per square.

My husband built the box for me & put a nylon trellis on the northside of the box for the vine veggies. Also put a pvc frame over the box to drape tree/bush netting, which kept out the critters.
I did get "seed-happy" and got a little carried away (very easy to do) so I will watch it this time around.
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Old 02-26-2009, 08:21 AM
 
Location: Nashville, TN
43 posts, read 244,083 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Debsi View Post
So that's why I only got one cherry tomato? Among other things I did wrong.

How do you know when to do the pollinating? how often?
I pollinate my cucumbers and tomatoes by hand if I don't see a lot of pollinator insects around. It's a different method for each, from what I know.

With tomatoes, the flowers contain both pollen and ovary. So all you need to do is gently shake the flowers (cool video at link) every so often. It worked wonders for my tomatoes last year- I had them through October. Some sites I've seen do say to hand pollinate with a Q-tip if you are growing them inside, though. Here's another great page on tomato pollination.

For cucumbers (and other curcubits), the pollen is located within the male flower and the ovary of the fruit is located in female flowers. Here's a good page on squash hand-pollination, although cuke ovaries are smaller than the squash, of course! (More pictures of cucumber flowers are here.)

I used these methods last year and had lots of fruits thanks to learning a bit about pollination and how to help along the plants and their yummy fruit. It made me feel like I understood the process and my plants better.
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Old 02-27-2009, 07:13 AM
 
Location: a nation with hope
12,757 posts, read 15,209,394 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by North_Raleigh_Guy View Post
Here are some step by step pictures of how I put put together my square foot garden this past week. In the end I only used about half of the peat moss I purchased so I guess I didn't need to buy as much. I could have used more vermiculite to add to the mix, but it is the most expensive component and I skimped since I am on a tight budget. I will update with more pictures once I make the planting grid and install my seedlings.
Great photos! Reps to you for such good guidance for all of us! Thanks so much.
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Old 02-27-2009, 08:05 AM
 
9,452 posts, read 24,606,084 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by southward bound View Post
Great photos! Reps to you for such good guidance for all of us! Thanks so much.
Thanks! Here are some more pics from "putting in the square foot grid".

I used twine and double pointed tacks to install the grid


Up close shots




Final Product


Up next, putting in some cool weather plants ...
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Old 02-27-2009, 08:35 AM
 
Location: Home in TN:)
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North_Raleigh_Guy

Thank you for sharing your progress and pictures. Keep it up. I have a couple of months before I can contribute. Keep up the good work and happy planting.
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Old 02-27-2009, 12:52 PM
 
395 posts, read 1,060,284 times
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North_Raleigh_Guy
thanks for sharing the pictures! It certainly gave me an idea how to go about the square foot garden how. Just one question though...sorry it might come across as a dumb question.

Since you placed papers in the bottom of the square to avide weeds/grass, if you plant tomatoes, carrots ect would the roots still grow through the paper?
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Old 02-27-2009, 05:04 PM
 
Location: a nation with hope
12,757 posts, read 15,209,394 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rakhi View Post
North_Raleigh_Guy
thanks for sharing the pictures! It certainly gave me an idea how to go about the square foot garden how. Just one question though...sorry it might come across as a dumb question.

Since you placed papers in the bottom of the square to avide weeds/grass, if you plant tomatoes, carrots ect would the roots still grow through the paper?

Actually, I've heard it said that when planting tomatoes, it's good to wrap the stem of the tomato in newspaper, leaving about 2 inches above ground, to discourage nibbling worms and such. Anybody else hear of that?
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Old 02-27-2009, 06:08 PM
 
Location: Beautiful East TN!!
7,285 posts, read 17,712,660 times
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Default Hi Y'all!

YoungLisa, thanks for pointing me to this thread, I love it! Such great help and ideas so far fromeveryone.
I too am going to try to sq ft gardening method and I have yet to go get the book.
But seeing the pics from NRGuy answered some of my questions, thanks!
I am going to try to find some local rocks (freebees, or cheep) to build the beds out of, so they look a bit more "park like" in my back yard which neigbors can see. But I had no idea how deep the mix had to be, but it seems like it you use 2x8 wood and mix all that up, looks like about 8 inches depth on the dirt mix. Do you all agree?
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Old 02-27-2009, 07:50 PM
 
Location: Home in TN:)
18,671 posts, read 22,719,509 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbmouse View Post
YoungLisa, thanks for pointing me to this thread, I love it! Such great help and ideas so far fromeveryone.
I too am going to try to sq ft gardening method and I have yet to go get the book.
But seeing the pics from NRGuy answered some of my questions, thanks!
I am going to try to find some local rocks (freebees, or cheep) to build the beds out of, so they look a bit more "park like" in my back yard which neigbors can see. But I had no idea how deep the mix had to be, but it seems like it you use 2x8 wood and mix all that up, looks like about 8 inches depth on the dirt mix. Do you all agree?
Welcome. The people here have some great ideas and NRG is doing a great job of visuals. He is doing his garden "by the book" the newest book.

According to the book the recommended material size is:
1 x 6 lumber or
2 x 6 for a sturdier garden

You should be fine with 2 x 8. I think the mix will be about 6 inches deep. Two inches of each of the three ingredients mixed up.

Rocks should work fine. One thing that is stressed in the book is to mark off 1 x 1 blocks using wood, twine, or whatever you have. I will be using some of the electric fence that we have leftover from keeping the cows out, lol.
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