Saturday, July 9, 2011

Ghost of Gardens Past

This garden is not my first experience with raised bed gardening. Back in 1986 I built some raised beds in my “back yard”, which is really just a clearing in a stand of Eastern white pine. Since the “soil” was a few inches of forest duff on top of a dense mixture of clay and pebbles left by the glaciers, I had to go with raised beds filled with peat and bagged top soil. With a half day of sun, these beds actually were pretty productive for about five years. Then the tree roots found the boxes and invaded. They sucked the moisture right out of the boxes and stunted my plants, so I abandoned the boxes.
This picture shows the abandoned boxes being reclaimed by forest. Note that I built trellises using 2x4s and strung them with either the 7” nylon garden netting (for peas and cucumbers) or with nylon cords that I twisted tomatoes around. I also installed white plastic tube in which I inserted hoops of plastic tubing to serve as supports for row cover or plastic. The black plastic hoops have been recycled for use in my new garden.

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