Monday, March 3, 2014

SOIL IS IN THE RAISED BEDS

It was a long day on Saturday.  2nd Man has a cold so he stayed in town but we still had the soil delivery scheduled.  The guy came about 10am.





Before the delivery, the cart was standing by and ready to go.  The trees are still brown and 'Wintry', but the grass is quickly greening up.



After the delivery.  This was 5 cubic yards of soil.  It's funny, in the picture looking back now, it doesn't seem so big.  Trust me though, when I was about halfway through the pile, I wasn't sure if I had the willpower to finish.


This was it after I was done.  That's just a scattering of soil on the ground. I could have scraped up some of it, but to be perfectly honest, by that time, I was DONE, ha.  Of course, I told 2nd Family they could come take whatever they needed for pots and containers.



I learned my lesson with the new cart, it worked great but the first couple of loads, I filled it up to heaping...it was so heavy I could barely move it!  So I started shoveling half loads.  That worked much better.



This is the reason I made sure the width between the beds was 36"...so that I would always be able to get carts and wheelbarrows between them.  Some raised bed articles I read when I was designing the area said that 24" is fine.  I can assure you though, if I had done that, this job would have been MUCH more difficult.  I would wheel the cart to a raised bed and then tip it over into it.  Toward the end, I used the shovel to just top off each bed.  I didn't fill them to the top on purpose so that I could add compost and other things to mix into the soil later on in the process.
Raised beds filled with soil
So now they are all filled.  We won't be planting in all of them though this first season.  It's just that we figured it would be easier to load all that dirt in before the mulch was down so we didn't spill it all over everything and then smash down the mulch with the weight of the cart back and forth.  But this is it, they are all full now, I even topped off the existing beds with fresh soil...now comes the last part of the irrigation to several of the beds we're going to plant in first.

On Saturday, it was about 80 degrees while doing this...now as this posts, it is 29 degrees and they are forecasting sleet tonight!  Crazy weather this year.  Still not quite the right time to plant veggies but soon, very soon!


14 comments:

Marcia said...

Looks like a job well done. I bet you could plant peas and other cold crops now. I know I will as soon as the snow is gone and the beds are workable. I try to plant peas by St. Patrick's Day. Don't know if that will happen this year.

jaz@octoberfarm said...

great job! you are ready to grow!

beachdaddy said...

You might want to put weed fabric of thick mulch on the beds you won't be using this year as there are always plenty of wind blown weed seeds looking for a nice place to grow... might save you some work!!

Grow a Good Life said...

Wow that was quite a job! In the 80-degree heat too. The soil looks wonderful and the beds look great. It is also nice to see some green grass. We still have 2-feet of snow on the ground. I will need to garden vicariously from my blogging friends for a while. I hope 2nd Man feels better soon.

JohnandJean said...

Might be an idea to put that spare soil into some containers or store it on some matting to keep out weeds. The beds you filled will settle a surprising amount within a short time so that even a heavy application of compost may not be enough to keep a decent depth. Very neat job though and well planned.

wendywoo said...

Looooking good! Can't wait to see plants growing in them!

Sandy said...

1st Man,

Looking really good. I know that was a lot of work, it's a good thing you had help with your new wheel barrow. Temperatures are really cold here with snow and ice this afternoon. Stay warm.

FionaG said...

You are a legend! Just a suggestion for your empty beds, perhaps planting some living mulch like lucerne, chickpeas, red/white clover, pinto peanut (all legumes) etc. You just leave it then a few weeks before you sow your seeds you turn them into the bed. The whole process brings nitrogen and nutrients to your bed. It's really good for deep beds too as it keeps the soil from becoming hard. I'm not sure if it will last for more than a year but something small like clover should. It will help with keeping the weeds at bay while benefiting your soil. Will be trying it myself for the first time this year. We can purchase 'green manure' kits.

The Singing Gardener said...

Well done, that is going to make some fantastic fruit and veg. What I would give for a garden big enough to have a veg patch like that. Fingers crossed that I get the allotment that I applied for here without too much of a wait.

sherry miller said...

Our weather in Indiana has been so off compared to years before that I'm not sure when we will be able to plant. I love your raised beds I have 4 and then a 8x24 garden spot beside them just for my maters, lol. I always enjoy your blog.

Katie C. said...

Looks good! You must be creaking! I have to warn you - don't be surprised if some critters go digging in your new soil while you are away. Every year, when we add the fresh compost to our raised beds, some critters (I'm blaming the squirrels and raccoons) start digging. I think the smell makes them think that there should be some good grubs in there. I was so surprised the first year when it looked like a three year old had dug up and tossed half of our seedlings all over the place. We replanted and they did it again the next day! We now add our fresh compost and wait a few days before anything else goes in the beds.

Darlene B said...

Funny... I check your blog every so often and I've rebuilt my garden this year and followed the same steps as you guys. Raised beds, new watering system, etc. But mine is much smaller so I only had 2 yards of dirt and about a yard of stone (instead of mulch). Just a few weeks ahead of you here in FL! I've already got everything growing and my bean plants are about 8" tall now!

Anonymous said...

The years are catching up with me so I'm going to limit my gardening to containers this year. Just wanted to pass on a little weather lore given to me by my grandmother who was an early settler in Ark. She said to never trust the Spring weather until after Easter. And Easter doesn't come until April 20 this year. That is really late. Hate for late freezes to dampen all your enthusiasm. Julia

Anonymous said...

Just found ur Blog n signed up-this is also a dream of ours but n Tennessee-cant wait 2 follow ur progreaa-its all sooo beautiful so far =0)