Square Foot Gardening Forum
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In the beginning... Empty In the beginning...

Post  davlafont on 3/22/2010, 5:46 pm

And so I have begun my SFG journey. Here are pics of my location and my very first box. I plan to build three boxes this year, but they may get phased in over the course of the year. I'm starting with low cost materials (though not free) at a trial run year. If my family and I become totally hooked on SFG, I can definitely see building more costly, better looking, longer lasting boxes.

On with the show...

Below is the southern face of my house. I live among numerous giant oaks and this is the only spot of sunshine around. Even now, the house is in shadow, but as the sun marches higher into the sky on its way to the solstice, the shadows will recede and sun will reach my boxes.
In the beginning... Box-1

Here are the materials I used. My Home Depot has 1x3 furring in 8' lengths for $1.27. I bought 10 plus a bundle of Lath for another ~10 bucks. I already had landscape cloth and galvanized nails. I clamped together a bunch of the boards and cut them in half. That should tell you how precise I planned to be (not very...)
In the beginning... Box-2

Each board actually measures 2.5" wide. Three of them make 7.5" plus another 0.5" for a stabilizing lip that will (hopefully) keep the sides from bowing too much as they warp. Total depth of the frame will be 8" which gives a little room at the top for an edge, rather than having The Mix level with the top of the box.
In the beginning... Box-3

I decided to stagger the board ends for a little extra strength. They will fit together like fine furniture Razz The small piece in the middle not only holds all three slats together, but is also my 6" marker. I would later decide to add a few more as rests for my grids.
In the beginning... Box-4

Here's evidence of my master cabinetry deficiency.
In the beginning... Box-5

This interior corner shot shows the strengthening lip and additional corner braces in place. It seemed to be a little overkill, but I was glad when I picked up the frame that it didn't totally fold on me.
In the beginning... Box-6

Voila! One 4x4 down...
In the beginning... Box-7

And here it is in position. landscape cloth stapled to the bottom, and lath grid in place too. The only thing missing is the Mel's Mix. (And plants)
In the beginning... Box-8

You might be able to make out the plan for the rest of the garden. I'll have a 4x6 box in the center and another 4x4 on the end. The two aisles leave access to the utilities on the wall, plus it makes the trip to the back side of the boxes shorter. The stones are the remnants of the former flower bed. We may incorporate them into the overall design; our house--indeed out whole town--is surrounded by stones like these.

I plan to update this thread as my own little blog. With any luck there will pics of my bountiful crops and smiling wife. Time will tell...

Posts : 7
Join date : 2010-03-11

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Post  titans01 on 3/22/2010, 10:18 pm

Pretty sweet box. I especially like the boards inside to rest the grid on.

Male Posts : 122
Join date : 2010-03-10
Age : 49
Location : Nebraska (Zone 5a)


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Post  choksaw on 3/22/2010, 11:02 pm

carpentry deciciency???? im not seeing it those boxs look great and the overlap method worked great for me as well for stability keep us posted on the progress

Male Posts : 459
Join date : 2010-03-02
Age : 45
Location : New Port Richey FL.

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Post  new2this on 3/23/2010, 8:45 am

Nice job on that; one down.....2, 3, who knows how many more to go? You've got great yard space for gardening...lucky you!

Female Posts : 215
Join date : 2010-03-05
Age : 45
Location : southeast MN, zone 4a

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Post  nancy on 3/23/2010, 9:16 am

this is beautiful! thanks so much for sharing! my 1st box is nothing pretty, but my next one(s) might be...


Female Posts : 595
Join date : 2010-03-16
Location : Cincinnati, Ohio (6a)

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Post  timwardell on 3/23/2010, 9:45 am

Impressive! Well done. I may have to "borrow" a few of those ideas for future boxes.

Certified SFG Instructor

Male Posts : 778
Join date : 2010-03-02
Location : Frisco, Texas


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In the beginning... Empty Update: box 2 complete!

Post  davlafont on 4/10/2010, 2:53 pm

Here's my second box. It's 4x6 because that's what fits between the utilities. I have a friend that is donating some of his seedlings, all of which are vines, hence the trellises.

In the beginning... Box-10
In the beginning... Box-9
In the beginning... Box-11

Two down, one to go. I'll be laying landscape cloth between and behind the boxes, using some of the stones pictured along the house foundation and maybe as a border to define the "bed" and then filling the rest with something. Maybe gravel, maybe bark.

I need more vermiculite...

Posts : 7
Join date : 2010-03-11

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