Raised bed allotment

tallyhohtallyhoh Forumite
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I have had an allotment for many years but was going to hand it back at the end of this year due to health reasons.

Instead my partner has offered to help make raised beds (my hip needs replacing & he has metal pins in his arms)

We have started to cover it with ground cover & intend to make the beds with chippings in between.

Does anyone have any tips about growing in raised beds, the advantages or problems?

Thank you
Tallyhoh!

Stopped Smoking October 2000. Saved £21,840 so far!

Replies

  • arbrightonarbrighton Forumite
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    What material are you going to use to construct the beds? New, appropriately treated sleepers can be expensive, and difficult to move about. Old ones may have all sorts used to treat them that won't be good for crops

    Will allotment committee/ rules allow such beds?

    How will you get additional compost/ soil in to fill these
  • tallyhohtallyhoh Forumite
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    Hi, I already have a few beds but would welcome suggestions on best materials for new ones. We are allowed raised beds thankfully, we are pretty easy going on rules as we struggle to fill empty plots, doesn't seem popular in our area.

    I already have 3 fairly large compost bins that have been filled over 13 years but I would obviously need much more than that, so looking for suggestions on the cheapest way of doing that.

    thank you
    Tallyhoh!

    Stopped Smoking October 2000. Saved £21,840 so far!
  • savemoneysavemoney Forumite
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    I grow mine in raised beds but its really only there to make it organized with paths in between and the beds are quite low. I also find it useful to allocate time to each bed for weeding so I dont do whole lot in one go a little a time

    I used gravel boards from local timber yard around £3-£4 for 6 foot length and used cut down rail bar (used in fencing) to make pointed stakes to bang in ground to support the gravel boards.

    Some people use old scaffolding boards also they last years in ground

    My paths are mainly grass which I cut with a strimmer.

    FHD0018.jpg
  • tallyhohtallyhoh Forumite
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    Your plot is looking great savemoney.

    Thanks for the tip about gravel boards, a thing we hadn't thought of.

    Have you found any disadvantages with beds?
    Tallyhoh!

    Stopped Smoking October 2000. Saved £21,840 so far!
  • edited 23 August 2016 at 4:38PM
    TheGardenerTheGardener Forumite
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    edited 23 August 2016 at 4:38PM
    If filling the beds is going to be an issue I would suggest 'lasagne' beds. Start at the bottom of the bed with flattened out cardboard boxes, then grass cuttings and paper shredding or ripped up newspapers (try local council or anyone you know who works in a large office - we chuck about 20 binliners of shredded paper a week where I work)
    Then find a local supplier of 'soil conditioner' type top soil. It costs about £25 a tonne and is usually green household waste composted by local contractors (usually farms) If you can get your hands on some bags of autumn leaves (but not oak ones)that would be excellent.
    Mix that with your homegrown compost. If you can run to it - buy a kilo of worms (loads of suppliers online) and chuck them in and as a finale, sprinkle of chicken manure pellets. Cover the whole lot over for the winter with some more cardboard and 'voila' fabby raised beds ready for the spring. :)
  • -taff-taff Forumite
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    they will dry out quicker than anything grown at ground level unless you put a good amount of water retaining compost/whatever else in it and they will lose nutrition if not treated the same as above.

    You can also grow clover or some kind of vetch to feed them, grow in early spring, or over winter, dig in before you plant.

    there are loads of ways to grow in raised beds, normally, using the sqaure foot method etc etc, some people have great success using straw as a medium etc, you should google and see what you can find. Head over to the Grapevine forum, I think there's a thread or many threads dedicated to the subject.
  • Little point I wonder about - for those living in Wales - and possibly other parts of the country as well.

    I would have taken "green waste" from the Council prior to moving here. Here though = no chance. I would worry too much about householders having given green waste to the Council with Japanese Knotweed in it (as I've been shocked by the laissez-faire attitude of owners of some properties with it). Followed by the Council not dealing with the waste properly in order to "cleanse it" from said JK.
  • tallyhohtallyhoh Forumite
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    Thank you all for suggestions, all being considered!
    Tallyhoh!

    Stopped Smoking October 2000. Saved £21,840 so far!
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