DIY: Raised Garden Bed

God made rainy days so gardeners could get the housework done.” ~Author Unknown

In Florida we get the warm temperatures for growing many types of plants almost year round but unfortunately the soil is extremely sandy in most areas and not the best for growing vegetables. I’m sure this is similar to many other parts of the country and world. Many people find they need to build a raised garden then fill it with enriched soil, including us.

You can buy raised garden kits of all types but this can be expensive! Many kits only give you a depth of about 6 inches and they can cost anywhere from $50 up to $300 depending on it’s extras like a plastic “greenhouse” cover that sits on top. Then you have to follow those annoying directions.

We built one that’s approximately 4’x4′ with a depth of about 18 inches and if you prefer to build it yourself we will tell you how we did it and what materials we used.

We actually uncovered the wood posts while raking the yard as they were buried under many layers of leaves and yard waste by the previous occupants of this home. When we discovered them we thought, free materials for a raised garden bed!

Next, we borrowed a saw and cut them into 4′ lengths – 14 pieces all together. We used a drill and screws to secure them all in place. Hopefully these photos show what we’re talking about. I don’t know carpentry lingo …at all!

Then we bought some weed cloth and a roll of coconut fiber to line the inside of the 4’x4′ box. We had to do this because of the large spaces in between the wood. Yeah, we sort of made this up as we went along, but it works great!

We used those metal strips used in drywall to nail on the corners…. uh…..Cornerbead!! (I just spent 5 minutes trying to Google that!) Anyway, we had some in the garage for some reason so we used it to secure the coconut fiber to the wood and it seemed to work great. If you have something else that you think might work better, go for it and use what you have.

When we finished we decided to put up some hardware cloth (kinda like chicken wire) between two poles to tie plants to as they grew. At that point we weren’t sure what we were planting and thought it might work for a squash or cucumber on a vine but we ended up not planting those items. There’s only so much you can fit inside a 4’x4′ box!

So there you have it. If you are confused or scratching you head over our lack of proper carpentry lingo leave us a comment with your questions, but hopefully the photos demonstrate what we weren’t able to explain.

Below is an updated photo to show it is in fact growing nicely. We have been pinching off some of the herbs to encourage thicker growth and of course, we have been using them too.

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  1. Well done! For your next trick, check out sheet mulching. Inexpensive and oh so fine. You can build a bed with cardboard, newspaper, straw, compost, and good soil – kinda like a layer cake.

    • I done pretty much the Same thing. I used pressure treated wood for the box. It was fine for about 3 years then began to rot away. By the time five years past many of the timbers were destroyed. I will have to build a new one now.


  1. […] What a smart idea! Use weed cloth and coconut fiber to line the inside of your garden box and cover up the large spaces between the wood. source. […]