Friday, March 21, 2014

Project 3 ~ Prepping Raised Beds for Spring Planting

 
Today was perfect for working in the garden, so I 
decided to finish up Project 3.
Last week I added hoops to the raised beds so I can apply plastic or netting.  The hoops are 8-foot lengths of half-inch PVC pipe.  I drove a 1-foot piece of rebar on each side of the beds two feet apart.  Then you slip the ends of the pipe over the rebar and you have an instant hoop.  Covering them with plastic allows me to get a head start on the garden.  Applying it early will help warm the soil and by next week, I can start planting seeds of cold weather plants such as kale.  Once it is warm enough on a consistent basis to remove the plastic, I will replace it with bird netting to keep out the chickens and any other wild critters  that may roam into the yard and decide to feast on my vegetables.
Today I picked up 10 bags of mixed compost and cow manure at Lowe's and used two of them for each bed to improve the soil.  The hardest part of this project was carrying the 40-pound bags of manure from the car to the garden, so I did it first to get it over with.
 
 
I worked the manure along with worm castings into the soil.  I probably should have done it before adding the hoops, but the ground was still to frozen last week for mixing, and it wasn't difficult to work between the hoops.
 
 
 
Newly prepared soil always makes me happy, especially after such a cold, brutal winter.
 
 

 
Lastly I spread the plastic over the hoops and held it down on the ends with old pieces of cut wood and bricks.
I covered all but one bed.  This one will be used for tomatoes and I won't be planting them until May, so I will probably go directly to netting on this bed.
 
 
The three-tiered planter in the center is planted with strawberries, but I'm not sure they survived the winter.  Time will tell.
 
This project came in a little over $100 even though some of my materials were leftover from last summer.  This is what I spent this year:
 
PVC pipes ~ $22.37
Rebar ~ $29.98
Clear 4mil plastic sheeting ~ $12.24
2 nets (I already had 2 from last year) ~ $12.24
10 bags of compost/cow manure ~ $42.27
Total ~ $119.63
 
Next week it's going to turn cold again, so I'll let the soil settle for a week before I start planting seeds.
And then the fun begins. 
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Linking with
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Mod Vintage Life for Mod Mix Monday
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Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday
 

10 comments:

La Vie Quotidienne said...

Amazing...this is going to be a spectacular garden.

La Vie Quotidienne said...

Amazing...this is going to be a spectacular garden.

My Garden Diaries said...

LOOK AT THIS!!!! OH!!!!!! What a beautiful scene friend! I love everything about this post! You got so much done!! And look at those hoops!!! I can not wait to see your crops! A wonderful weekend to you!! And happy spring!! Nicole xoxo

Betty from My Irish Cottage Home said...

You are going to have a beautiful garden. We are redoing our raised beds this year and will be starting in a few weeks.

Art and Sand said...

Oh my! You are a serious gardener.

I was hoping to plant a vegetable garden now that I am retired, but a new puppy changed those thoughts.

Good luck with your garden.

Art and Sand said...

Oh my! You are a serious gardener.

I was hoping to plant a vegetable garden now that I am retired, but a new puppy changed those thoughts.

Good luck with your garden.

Linda@arichtapestry said...

Preparing the raised beds is a satisfying activity. You look prepared for the changeable weather. We're due for a drop in temperature overnight and frost at the moment so some covering is important and to protect your plants later on from birds. You've made a good job with yours.

Diane Cayton-Hakey said...

What will you be planting next week?

June said...

This is so awesome Cindy! I am loving your projects posts so much. I never thought of the hoops before. I have raised beds but this will be an great addition to them to keep the little visitors that come at night and nibble on things.
I also enjoyed your stairway redo. It looks so fresh and lovely after all that work.
I want to thank you for your lovely comment you left on my guest blogger post at Kris'. You are such a sweet friend!
many hugs...

Michele @ The Nest at Finch Rest said...

And now I am hearing threats about snow tonight? Hope not. It's spring, doesn't mid Ohio KNOW that yet??

Sorry I have been MIA - a lot going on with family health, not good stuff but will get through it.

Hugs.

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