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Square Foot Gardening Forum
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Using dirt/sod as fill Toplef10Using dirt/sod as fill 1zd3ho10

Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.

Using dirt/sod as fill I22gcj10Using dirt/sod as fill 14dhcg10

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Using dirt/sod as fill

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Using dirt/sod as fill Empty Using dirt/sod as fill

Post  gardenwriter 4/15/2010, 10:48 am

Thanks to those of you who have been giving me feedback on the stone wall raised garden bed I am about to break ground on. I am not very well versed on responding to posts, but I promise to work on those (very easy, I'm sure) technical skills.

Tomorrow I dig around the perameter of the bed in order to create a trench. This will be filled with gravel and the walls will be dry stacked on this bed. I've been told at the quarry that because the wall is only a foot, I only need to dig down three inches or so. The width of the trench will be 10 inches, give or take, and I'll be digging around a 16 x 4 inch bed.

I'd like to lay down newspaper/cardboard on the grass in the soon-to-be garden bed, and throw some of the sod I'll be digging up on top of it. Since my layer of Mel's Mix will only be 4 inches, I need to fill the bottom with something. I would then put sand on top of the sod, allowing room for my Mel's Mix on top, once the walls are built.

Good idea or bad idea? Let me know!

Gardenwriter
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Post  boffer 4/15/2010, 11:02 am

Hi,

I would put weed block on top of the fill/sand to keep Mel's mix from intermingling and slowly disappearing. Mel has shown that 4 inches is sufficient for smaller rooted plants like lettuce, but 6 inches is ideal for most everything.
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Post  gardenwriter 4/15/2010, 12:24 pm

So, should I put cardboard/paper on the grass I'm going to be covering tomorrow, just on top of the fill, or both? It sounds like whatever I put on top of the fill should be more substantial than newspaper, am I right? If so, what would you suggest?

Thanks for your quick response!

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Post  mckr3441 4/15/2010, 12:47 pm

I recommend woven weed barrier cloth at least directly under the Mel's Mix. I'm crazy about stuff coming up from the bottom so, if it were mine, I'd probably over-do with cardboard also on both levels.

Don't use the plastic weed barrier with the little holes in it as stuff does break through that and come up! Once those little seedlings get their nose through one of those little holes, all is lost!

That's my experience, anyhow.

Good luck and I hope you post pictures when your done along with details.

Claire
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Post  gardenwriter 4/15/2010, 1:09 pm

Thanks, Claire. So, you agree with Boffer that it's okay to throw the sod into the base of my 1 foot high bed? That will make life so easy for me tomorrow if I don't have to haul it away. I appreciate the weed barrier tips and I will put plenty of newspaper down also.

The garden building isn't scheduled until May 15. I'm super excited and will definitely post photos.

Happy gardening . . .

Peggy
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Post  mckr3441 4/15/2010, 1:23 pm

When you throw the sod in there, be sure to turn it upside down.
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Post  chexmix 4/15/2010, 1:31 pm

Yes I would use the sod to help get the hieght you are looking for. On top of the sod I would lay card board or news paper. Then add your sand or other filler dirt. Then add another layer of card board or news paper then my weed cloth. This will give you alot of protect againts the sod coming up through it all. Then add the mels mix and enjoy planting in your new space.
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Post  gardenwriter 4/15/2010, 2:39 pm

Excellent advice all the way around. Thanks!

Peggy

PS: Boy, what a friendly bunch you are!
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