RAISED BED GARDEN ENGINE
Well, you are here and maybe been confused by blog 1 talking about straight back chairs and a homestead, well now to tie it together in our own Homestead.
A raised bed system that acts as an engine.
You and your circumstances are unique to you so what I am describing might work or it just might be a catalysis for something even better. One of the facts that I have seen over and over is too large of food plots rather than too small. I am guilty of this myself. It is a nice day and before I realize I have 500 Tomato plants when I only have the time and resources to take care of 100. Trying to do the larger plot ALL SUFFERED.
What I designed was done when I realized that I wasn’t getting any younger and a small high yield was the ticket. Now for some facts.
- Raised beds are great if you have water to compensate for the faster soil drying.
- Most raised beds are not built to last. I have tested here on the Sawmill different woods and designs and it has surprised me how fast wood rots, even the more durable.
- Raised beds by design have a downdraft problem. (This is a new term that I am going to use and stay tuned for Blog three for the answer. (Yes, I am horrible)
- Raised beds typically lose their richness of the soil.
- Now that I have painted less than a stellar review, here is the one thing that trumps everything else. Raised beds can be built and managed where you need them not that wonderful garden plot that isn’t in your backyard. Raised beds can be more productive than non-managed garden plots.
So, with this stated I am going to layout a raised bed system. This system consists of five raised bed areas. I don’t care if you have one bed split into five areas or ten areas divided by twos.
Having the five growing areas allows you to build and manage your soil. This is the crutch to what makes your raised beds better than in-ground. When you are building soil with a raised bed you normally have deeper soil to work with. This allows you to have better drainage, better soil dynamics, and a greater bank of nutrients for the plant to absorb.
In a typical set up you add nutrients to the surface, the roots go where the nutrients are then when hot weather hits guess what. This is what we are going to fix, and a fix is actually Chickens. To understand one of the age-old methods that seem to work and is actually mentioned in the Bible is leaving the field fallow or not used for a season. This allows the dynamics of the soil to come back into sync with the soil itself and the ground is better for it. We are going to do this with one-fifth of the ground but in a tight area, this becomes a problem because we can’t afford the loss of productivity. So, the solution is a Chicken house/tractor that sets on the raised bed and allows the chickens free rein of the bed. This allows the soil to rest, adds tremendous nutrients, and puts a bug-eating weed-killing machine where we need it the most.
The problem with this is heating up the ground, but nature gives us an added benefit. Remember the five areas? Now I will explain the areas so we have our engine working.
- The first area is the fallow Chicken run. When we finished last year’s mulch pile, we added it on top of the 1st run helping choke any weeds and giving the chickens more to play with.
- The second area which is last year’s chicken run we will plant Brassicas. Other words Cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, and others. They can handle the over hot ground from the chicken’s manure and will grow out of the world. By the end of the season, the ground will have calmed down and is ready for the rotation next year.
- Tomatoes, Peppers, and Basil
- Now we have the squash and cucumbers onions, and carrots
- Beans we got to have bean type crops. This includes pole bush whatever your sweet bippy desires. The good thing about this is beans build the soil and will balance out the bed even better.
Now before you start off that I didn’t include this or that just add them to their compatible plants and have fun. This is about the end of this post but stay tuned and I will get to the down and up of the plant.
So, for now, take care to sleep tight, don’t let the bedbugs bite, and understand that you can make it.