Saturday, May 15, 2010

More on raised beds

I fibbed just a bit in my last post when I said that I had made two raised beds. It's more correct to say that I've only just today finished them. More pics:

The slats are there largely to keep a top layer of weed cloth in place. No sense in letting anything germinate in these nice new, fertile beds before we're ready. Plus it keeps the fill from blowing away (it's a very windy day here today). The slats also establish our square foot grid once we transplant seedlings. They just have the ends tucked under the top plate - they aren't fastened in place.

Our two beds are tucked into the sunniest corner of the yard, between the raspberry beds.

When my folks were in town a few weeks ago, my dad and I put the trellis in. We rented a power auger to dig the post holes down four feet, but it turns out that the dirt a foot or two down becomes very loose. As soon as we'd pull the auger up the hole would half fill back in. My dad ended up getting a post hole digger to lift out the rest. The posts go down about four feet to be below frost line. For aesthetics, we knocked the corners with my table saw. I've got eye hooks in the posts for putting supporting lines across. But as the tallest cane is currently about 6" tall, I figure I've got some time still.

When the raspberries arrived last fall, they were basically a bundle of twigs with some spindly roots packed in ice. I carefully planted each stunted cane, then watched them stand forlorn in the beds all winter. More than one were snapped off by an errant dog or toddler, as recently as a two weeks ago, I feared that there were no signs of life. Then I learned that the plants will send up new canes from the roots, rather than bug from the existing cane. It appears that all of them have survived and are putting up new green.

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