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Designing a Vegie Garden


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#1 purpleblackqueen

Posted 28 December 2012 - 05:57 AM

What did you take into consideration when designing the layout and structure of your vegie garden.? What is it made from- eg timber frames, or just dug  into the ground?

I have a massive area to use for the vegie garden. But am after some ideas

#2 imamumto3

Posted 28 December 2012 - 06:11 AM

we used the safe treated pine to build up a frame.  we filled the garden bed with soil from our garden, organic veggie mix from the nursery, compost, horse manure, and a sprinkling of dynamic lifter and gypsum.

make sure you can access the garden bed from all sides.

we have put a frame and netting around ours so that it doesn't get eaten by birds and possums, so we literally have to walk into a caged area.

ideally if you have a large area I would erect a large caged area and put several smaller beds in it so that you have easy access to all of them and can do crop rotation.

and choose the spot in the garden that gets all day sun

#3 ubermum

Posted 28 December 2012 - 07:02 AM

We are renting so have made up cheap frames made with redgum sleepers. One sleeper long and half a sleeper wide. They are just bolted together and sat on top of the ground. We filled them with well rotted down compost (it looks like soil) and topped with sugarcane mulch. When we move we can just pick up the frames and spread the contents thinly all over the existing lawn. Having multiple beds makes plant rotation easier. We have a watering system set up that has flexible little hoses off it with drippers. These sit just under the mulch.

Before setting up a vegie garden, consider where the water will come from. Perhaps dig a trench around so you can install various tap points. Also consider a tank off the roof of the house for when we inevitably have stricter water restrictions again. Dh is making a chicken enclosure this week that will be the exact size of one of the beds and has handles so that it can be moved. When a bed is empty, it will become the floor of the chicken house so that they can dig over all the soil, eat any weeds and unwanted seeds and pick out any bugs and fertilise the bed. Also consider fencing if rabbits can get into your yard.

The diggers club (they have a website) has a great book about vegie gardens and their management. They also sell really lovely varieties of heirloom vegetable seeds and plants by mail order. I have found them invaluable. They also have information on fruit trees.

#4 akkiandmalli

Posted 28 December 2012 - 08:18 AM

QUOTE (ubermum @ 28/12/2012, 08:02 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
.

Before setting up a vegie garden, consider where the water will come from. Perhaps dig a trench around so you can install various tap points. Also consider a tank off the roof of the house for when we inevitably have stricter water restrictions again. Dh is making a chicken enclosure this week that will be the exact size of one of the beds and has handles so that it can be moved. When a bed is empty, it will become the floor of the chicken house so that they can dig over all the soil, eat any weeds and unwanted seeds and pick out any bugs and fertilise the bed. Also consider fencing if rabbits can get into your yard.

The diggers club (they have a website) has a great book about vegie gardens and their management. They also sell really lovely varieties of heirloom vegetable seeds and plants by mail order. I have found them invaluable. They also have information on fruit trees.


uber mum your chicken coop sounds amazing!! can your DH build me one????

i am a member of Diggers club and I highly reccommend it.. clive beasley ( founder) is amazing and is so knowledgable. I went to some of their lunch/talks about sustainable gardening a few years back and it just blewme away. I havent been to herronswood although planning at some point this holidays but St erth is a lovely country drive outside melbourne.
i also bought the books which are an excellent resource and talks about companion planting and croprotation.

we have a large 4x3 plot that i grow seasonla vegies in. currently i have tomatoes, pumpkins, cucumber, salad greens, chillis, curry leaf, gotakola, lavender ( for bees) silverbeet strawberries and eggplant. i planted all my vegies on cup day so now they are coming to fruition. it is so satisfying.
like uber mum i am renting so my plot is just bordered with sleepers and was filled with an organic composted soil. I feed my plants only with seasol ( organic seaweed solution) weekly to promote growth and stops some dieases. its great for the kids they love to water and plant new seeds/plants

Edited by akkiandmalli, 28 December 2012 - 08:19 AM.


#5 Feral Cancerian

Posted 28 December 2012 - 08:27 AM

I designed my garden after looking at medieval gardens and French potagers. These are gardens designed to look good as well as provide food.

I started with an 8m square area and created a design with a big rosemary in the centre, surrounded by diamond, wedge and triangular shaped beds. Eventually all the paths in between will be recycled bricks.

I don't think it really matters so much what you plant where, as long as you don't plant the same things in the same beds year after year.

Get some graph paper, OP, for experimenting, and maybe some library books on vegetable gardening.

#6 Tulipa

Posted 28 December 2012 - 08:44 AM

We bought 2 of those birdies brand corrugated iron raised garden beds from bunnings ($200 each). The first we filled with gravel, river sand (to help with drainage), potting mix and mulch. This was very expensive and took much more potting mix than I had calculated. Much better to order in some soil or similar from a landscaping place.
You also need to plan where plants should go. We put some squash in the middle and it just overtook everything. The leaves are so massive! In the end we ripped it out and all the other plants are much happier.
I believe it's better to choose a location with lots of morning sun. Some of our plants also seem to find the afternoon sun too intense so try for a shadier spot or place them behind taller plants.
I think we have now made our money back from the plants. Getting a profitable return on the actual garden beds and filling will take a bit longer

#7 unicorn

Posted 28 December 2012 - 08:55 AM

http://www.abc.net.au/gardening/stories/s972741.htm
Research crop rotation and companion planting.
Raised beds are the go, no dig beds are even better, I have a mix of old roofing tin and timber sleepers for my beds, I also have things in pots, it's a bit of a mixture.

#8 Le-a

Posted 28 December 2012 - 09:04 AM

OP check out 'No Dig Gardens', based on permaculture principles.

We have just built our second no dig v patch and have had the most amazing results. They are extremely water wise, ( mine only gets water on the hottest days ) and pretty simple to maintain.

We used recycled bits of timber we had from renovations to make the bed frames, using other chopped up bits as "pins" to hold them in place.

One thing I always take into consideration when planting out is the direction of the sun, so the tall stuff like corn and tomato dosnt shade the little stuff like lettuce.

Personally, I think the bought corrugated iron garden frames are a bit of a rip off. But then I hate paying for stuff I can make myself, I can appreciate they are convenient.

If you are interested, google "wicking garden beds", these are super delux and on my list for when we have our forever home.

Also, get a worm farm going, free fertilizer!

Happy gardening!

Edited by Le-a, 28 December 2012 - 09:06 AM.


#9 BetteBoop

Posted 28 December 2012 - 09:20 AM

OP, we have several vege gardens. We used any available space without any consideration to anything and have seen big differences in the outcomes according to where things were planted.

I would avoid anything that gets too much overhang from other trees as leaf litter from some trees can affect the soil quality. Also, most plants need a fair bit of sun. Not much will grow in shade.

As PP said, make sure you can get water to it easily. You need to water a lot so it needs to be easy to do.

IME, if you have gardens close to the kitchen, you're more likely to use and maintain them. If they're far away, ducking outside to grab some herbs to put in dinner is too much effort and the garden soon becomes disused.

QUOTE (ubermum @ 28/12/2012, 07:02 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Dh is making a chicken enclosure this week that will be the exact size of one of the beds and has handles so that it can be moved. When a bed is empty, it will become the floor of the chicken house so that they can dig over all the soil, eat any weeds and unwanted seeds and pick out any bugs and fertilise the bed.


This is what we did. We move the coop every 2 weeks or so to prevent disease to the chickens. In that time, they completely aerate the soil underneath the coop and fertilise it.

The only issue is the chicken poo has to compost for around a month before you can plant food in it as it can harbor nasty germs.




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