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HugelBOX?!?

 
R Scott
Posts: 3304
Location: Kansas Zone 6a
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I am building DIY Earthbox/wicking beds and got to thinking, can you add small wood (cabinet shop scrap sized wood) and still get a benefit? or is it a waste of time?
 
Marc Troyka
pollinator
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Location: East Central GA, Ultisol, Zone 8, Humid
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The main benefit of adding wood and things of that nature to a raised bed is that it attracts worms like crazy. Did wonders for my compacted soil, but won't really do you much good in a box.
 
R Scott
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I was hoping it would support fungi and worms, so that is something.
 
Charles Tarnard
Posts: 337
Location: PDX Zone 8b 1/6th acre
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At some point this year I hope to make a couple of planters like you describe with their own soil ecosystems. I was going to cut my prunings down to dowels and nail them into the soil as they came available, then inoculate.

Unfortunately that hasn't started yet. I am eager to see your results.
 
Jeanine Gurley
pollinator
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Location: Midlands, South Carolina Zone 7b/8a
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I am going to try this very thing.

I cannot dig in the soil in the area that I live now, due to underground utilities and the fact that this lot is rented.

So my plan is to build an above ground bed and put several logs at the bottom. After building hugel beds at my old place I believe that the larger logs vs. chips are the key.

Am also planning on doing a couple of regular containers and filling them with limbs or maybe a small log before filling with soil.

It is all an experiment so not really sure it will work. But I am out of town a lot so I'm hoping this will help keep down watering requirements.

Also, the bottoms of the containers will be cut out so the roots can go down into the ground if they want to.
 
Galadriel Freden
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Location: West Yorkshire, UK
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Are you asking if you can do hugel in a box, or are you asking if you can use cabinet-making wood in the hugelbed?

If the former, I have done mini hugel window boxes successfully. I don't think they have worms (maybe a few, as I did use some garden soil to fill them). I also have a raised hugelbed directly on my stone patio, held in by dry stack bricks, also a success. This one is a lot bigger than a window box--around 1.5m x .5m x.5m (and it definitely has worms--I added them specially).
 
R Scott
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Location: Kansas Zone 6a
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Galadriel Freden wrote:Are you asking if you can do hugel in a box, or are you asking if you can use cabinet-making wood in the hugelbed?


Both. I was thinking that I needed to downsize the pieces to fit the space, and thinking the dense hardwood would slow the degradation so you wouldn't get into the whole nitrogen sink problem.
 
Galadriel Freden
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Location: West Yorkshire, UK
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I guess if the wood isn't treated you might as well throw it in the bed. I've got some old half-rotten fence posts which I'm considering using for a new hugelbed; I don't know if any residues of toxic stuff is on them though, so I'm still not sure. The fact that they are rotting makes me think they might be ok, though.
 
Marc Troyka
pollinator
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Location: East Central GA, Ultisol, Zone 8, Humid
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I think the main problem is more how much worms actually eat. Wood chips break down very slowly even outside, and worms eat enough that it'd be hard to keep enough food for them in a pot. I think a better solution for a pot for the same effect is just to fill the bottom with coir.
 
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