Build Two Raised Herb Gardens for Less Than $50
Our goal was to build two raised bed herb gardens for less than $50, and we were able to do it using this simple design.
To build these garden beds, we purchased 4 pieces of lumber at our local Lowes store. They were 2x10x8. We cut 2' off the end of each piece, leaving us with 4 pieces of lumber that were 6' long and 4 pieces of lumber that were 2' long. We then painted one side of each board. We used untreated lumber, so we chose to paint it to help it last a bit longer. I used leftover paint from another project, so this part cost us nothing.
Next, we used wood screws to attach the short end pieces to the long side pieces. We used three screws on each end to secure the boards. Then we set them in place in our yard. Next, we used cheap plastic drop cloths from the local Dollar store to "line" the insides of the boards. I just folded the cloths into long strips and stapled them onto the inner sides of the boards. I did this to help keep moisture and soil from contacting the surface of the boards, and to help preserve the boards a little better.
Next, I used large pieces of cardboard to completely line the bottom and sides of the beds. I have been using cardboard instead of plastic as a weed barrier for several years and I love it. It works wonderfully, and you can just use old boxes, etc so it is free as well.
Next, I filled each of the beds with topsoil that I purchased at Lowes. I used standard topsoil, and just poured it right into the beds. It took about 6 bags of topsoil for each bed.
Continue filling the beds until they are almost completely full. I planned to cover mine with mulch, so I left a couple of inches of space at the top.
Next, I planted my various herb plants with lots of help from Boudreaux...my little garden helper.
The final step was to cover the surface of the beds with mulch. I just spread it evenly across the top of the beds. It didn't take much...about one full bag for both beds.
Finally, I just watered the plants as needed. Luckily, there was almost no weeding needed at all over the growing season due to the use of the cardboard.
This is a picture of the beds later in the season. As you can see, the plants are all doing well and flourishing nicely. I have been able to take cuttings from all of the plants several times already, and look forward to having fresh herbs for a long time to come. This project was very reasonable to build...The lumber, dropcloths, topsoil and mulch came to about $48 all together....and the project took about 4 hours...not counting the time it took for the paint to dry.
This last picture shows a close up of my rosemary plant with the plant marker I made using seashells and copper wire. Check my other projects for instructions on how to make these very easily!
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