Monday, May 30, 2011

Raised Beds

My family celebrates memorial day in a number of ways: pancake breakfast, parade, yard projects and garage cleaning, abnormally long bike rides, and family bonfires or potlucks. I woke up this morning and ate Honey Nut Chex instead of pancakes and it just wasn't right. We did have BBQs Thursday and Sunday, so at least we got that in. We also took advantage of the long weekend to work on our garden (finally)!

We chose the top end of our yard along the fenceline as the spot that was the most sunny and the least awkward. There are enough awkward and decrepid elements in the backyard already. Saturday we started by removing the sod. After about a minute, I removed one scoop of sod. Jon took the shovel away from me and by the time I climbed the deck stairs he was this far.

I had looked online at this plan by Ana White, which Jon looked at for about 30 seconds before declaring that we didn't need a plan. So, without a plan, we went to Lowe's for some cedar fence boards. With a coupon, all the wood was about $40. Turned out we also needed screws, a circular saw, a level, a wheelbarrow, grass seed, and a shovel to complete this project. Jon claims that the wheelbarrow will last the rest of our lives, but I did not see that information on the tag anywhere.

Our backyard is what the realtor calls "sloping," so the three planter boxes are tiered. We left a space behind the boxes in case we ever decide to put up our own fence to hide the neighbor's chain link. The correctional facility feel is not great.

This entire process only took a few hours, and we refueled with spaghetti and meatballs. I didn't use to like spaghetti and meatballs but it seems like we always have the ingredients on hand. And surprise, they are delicious! Jon is clearly a convert to my meatball ways. We decided there are 2 rules: no onion in the meatballs, and keep the noodles separate so you can layer it on your plate before eating.

Unfortunately, by the time these cheese pinwheels came out of the toaster oven, we were both full of pasta. They were just okay, but may very well be delicious when you're not already stuffed.

The raised bed work continued on Monday. We got up early to borrow a truck and get dirt from the nursery. Jon made a ramp to get to the backyard.

Here he is filling our heirloom wheelbarrow with dirt.

If these pictures make it seem like Jon did most of the work, he did. I was the Lowe's coupon finder, dirt clump breaker-upper, bubble reader (the level), and the lemonade-bringer. Thanks Jonny :)

We need a little more dirt to fill the last box and build up the slope, but everything is planted! My strawberries are in the barrel at the top.


  1. Cool! That garden looks awesome!! And I want some of those cheese rolls!! I'm gonna try them.

  2. You guys are amazing! I like your garden boxes and I hope you get lots of good food from them!


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