Alex Vainio wrote:Thanks for the tips! I am indeed planning my first garden at the moment. It will be relatively temporary, as I know I will be moving out of my parents' house within a few years and nobody will garden after me, but we have the space and resources so I'm giving it a go.
Contrary to your suggestion, I am planning and building in the early spring and hoping to grow during the same summer. I am in Southern Finland, the climate is between temperate and cold. I can only build in one spot, which will be at the back of the property, zone 2-3. It is well protected from wind (next to a forest to the north and a barn to the west) and even though there's a big birch tree blocking some sun in the south-east, it will hopefully receive enough sunlight. The spot was previously used to grow potatoes (in the ground, conventional style), but as my grandmother had no idea about soil life, crop rotation etc., the soil and yield became very poor. It is slightly sloped, so the back of the beds will be 40cm and the front 30cm. We get 40-75mm of rain each summer month, a total avg 200mm per summer. If I need to irrigate, there is a long hose from the barn (own well) and I can also collect rainwater from our house roof. The only animals that might visit are rodents, moles and rabbits, (excluding the obvious insects and birds etc.) but I'm hoping to live in peace with all of them without a fence.
I will contruct a raised bed from old planks found in the property to experiment with no-dig and mulching. (There will also be a hugelkultur in another location and a Ruth Stout No-Work behind the raised beds.) I created two quick SketchUp drawings to give you some idea, actual real-life photos will follow in a few weeks or so. The inverted S path shape works for the location and will make more sense irl.
Any further suggestions or questions? Did I forget something important? I'd be forever grateful for comments.
Jack Tassoni wrote:Thanks for the timely topic. I am starting a new garden this year and your post has some good things to think about. Planning my garden I started with prepping for 2 years mainly because the land was raw and was covered in BlackBerry bushes. I needed to clear them out and to collect materials for raised beds. My beds will about 18 inches high. The lumber pile I posted is from a local sawmill and is incense cedar.
My property has a good slope so even though it is about 100 feet from the house, my planned garden is in a fairly level spot and is near my spring and my well. Also it is within my 2 acre deer fenced area. Deer are prolific here, We have about 10 come through on a daily basis so I reserved the other 3 acres for them and other wildlife.
I have been been making my own compost from using my neighbors goat manure and straw. I have about 2.5 cubic yards including the one pictured that I started 3 months ago. Finished my cold frame and have seedlings started. The ground is still too wet to get my tractor down to the new garden area for some additional leveling.
This will be my first garden in this area so I started a boatload of seedlings to see what will work best in this climate and soil. Very Hot and very dry summers with wet, 53” of precipitation all in 6 months.
I plan on 5 feet between the raised beds so I can fit my garden tractor or wheelbarrow without a problem and I have the luxury of plenty of land.
Oh, I also have 2 composting Urban wormbags for making AACT. I never got around to posting how I fabricated mine. But that is for another day.