The raised bed I put together uses a hodgepodge collection of materials for a couple reasons:
- I had the materials conveniently laying around the garage (which means I didn't have to buy anything) and
- I needed to compensate for a slight slope in this area of the garden.
I used two 2"x4"s on each side; one measured 4 feet while the other measured 10 feet long. I put the smaller one on the bottom and the larger one on top to build a little depth. The actual height on the deep side is 7 and 1/4 inches while on the high side is only 3 and a half inches. The soil underneath is in good shape after being amended with grass clippings and leaves in the fall. Generally if there is good soil underneath the raised beds the height doesn't need to be as tall. Rocky and clay compacted soils necessitate a higher/deeper raised bed.
To attach the beds together I used 1"x3" pieces cut to the correct height (7.25") on the corners and on the sides where the bottom 2"x4" ends. These pieces required a few more screws (I used 2" coated deck screws) to fit together than just going end to end but should hold together well. I put these on the outside of the beds but using 4"x4" posts on the inside corners is a good method also.
Now I need to layer the bottom with newspapers or cardboard then fill with soil, compost, and grass clippings from the yard. I still have at least one more bed to put together but since these will be tomato beds and tomatoes can't be planted outside for several weeks I have a little window of time to get the job done!
How are you expanding your vegetable garden this year?