by Lee Safin
Growing vegetables is hassle-free. They are compatible in various conditions as long as you grow them in a spacious place with adequate sunlight, moisture, and high-quality soil.
You can grow any grow boxes regardless of their type, size, shape, and materials. Wondering how to build a grow box for vegetables?”
People grow vegetables in grow boxes for various reasons, such as lack of garden space; the garden soil quality is not good. Regardless of the reason, knowing about “How to build a grow box for vegetables?” is simple if you know the correct method.
Here we are going to mention “How to build a grow box for vegetables?” step-by-step. Let’s dive in!
So you are here to know about “How to build a grow box for vegetables?” If you want to make grow boxes for vegetables, first decide what materials you want to use or easily accessible near at hand. Treated timber is one of the most common materials we can use to make grow boxes of vegetables.
You can grow healthy and fresh vegetables in a simple method on these grow boxes. Plus, it is a natural source. You might already have them in your house, so you save yourself from spending extra money. Let’s go through the process of “How to build a grow box for vegetables?” step-by-step.
At first, you want to choose a perfect place for setting up the grow box. Select an area where a lot of sunlight can reach easily. Vegetables require a sufficient amount of sunshine for maximum growth.
Next, select how large your grow box will be and cut them accordingly. However, following a standard size is a rule of thumb since it looks perfect.
So, how do you determine a perfectly sized grow box to plant vegetables?
According to most experts, the ideal size is 1.2 meters wide by 2.4 meters long and two sleepers high. However, you can increase or decrease the size based on the space you have. Additionally, creating corner posts is also necessary. You can go for 90 by 90 millimeter treated pine pots.
Make sure you wear all the safety gear while making grow boxes. Wearing a mask, a pair of gloves, and goggles is necessary.
You will need two types of sleepers to make a grow box: short-end sleepers and long sleepers.
First, go with the short-end sleepers. Mark them using a marker with the correct measurement. Then cut them appropriately. Next, properly set them up to the corner posts. Use 175 millimeters galvanized coach bolts and nuts.
Finally, attach the long sleepers to the two end parts. That’s all you have perfectly made a grow box for vegetables in an ideal size. It may look like a vegetable-raised garden bed, but you can count it as a grow box.
Plus, instead of internal space, outside space is better as you can ensure sufficient sunlight.
So, is it time to include soil? No! Before that, place a weed net at the bottom part of the grow box. The grow box won’t give any chance to weeds to grow under it.
Additionally, you want to make some holes in four corners of the grow box so that the extra water can drain properly.
Next, you want to add high-quality and well-draining garden soil for the optimum growth of the vegetables. You can also create a compelling mixture from homemade compost and organic animal manure.
So, these are the steps you want to follow to learn about “How to build a grow box for vegetables?”
It depends on your plants’ type. According to most experts, your planter box should be at least one foot deep. But if your plants are likely to become taller, two feet deepness could be better.
For example, if you want to grow spinach, lettuce, radishes, onions, or parsley, a minimum of one-foot deepness is necessary.
On the other hand, vegetables like carrots, tomatoes, or cucumbers require at least 1.5 feet deep for the planter box.
You will need more space to grow more bulky vegetables such as potatoes, artichokes, or asparagus. 2-feet deep will be a rule of thumb.
Let’s see them through a chart.
|Minimum Deep||Names of The Vegetables|
|12 inches||spinach, lettuce, radishes, onions, or parsley|
|18 inches||vegetables like carrots, tomatoes, or cucumbers|
|18+ inches||Basil, parsley, chives, coriander|
|24+ inches||Potatoes, artichokes, or asparagus|
Local soils are the best for raised beds because they have the highest compatibility with the local environment and climate. Though many experts recommend using 50% local topsoil and 50% compost, potting soil is another adequate soil you can use. Here is our recommendation for raised beds:
|Percentage of items|
|10% Potting soil|
You can use various types of woods for raised beds, such as cypress, cedar, redwood, etc. However, cedar is one of the best options because it can withstand fungal pests and insects due to its chemical structure.
Cedarwoods are available in various types. Here are some types of cedar woods:
|Cedar Wood Type||Cedar Wood Usage|
|Western Red Cedar||Outdoor structures, siding, paneling, trim, etc.|
|Juniper Cedar||Outdoor construction projects|
|White Cedar||Railroad ties, cabin logs, poles, rustic fencing, etc.|
|Yellow Cedar||Marine pilings, shingles, paddles, posts, poles, etc.|
No, avoid putting rocks in the base part of the elevated garden bed. Also, don’t do it for any containers or planters. Why? Keeping gravel or rocks under the raised garden bed, your plant may have root rot or fungal growths.
The rock layer created from the setup will trap water under the soil. As a result, it may encourage fungal growth or root rot.
However, use pea gravel or crushed rock if your raised bed garden has a poor drainage system. Avoid using other types of rocks. Also, if your raised garden bed is more than 20 inches tall, you may use it when you don’t have an alternative. If you can avoid it, skip it. Go for natural ways.
Should I line my raised garden bed with plastic?
Yes, you can line your raised garden bed with plastic to ensure a good drainage system and keeping the soil in. Moreover, an insulation system occurs for the soil to keep the soil cool during the hot climate.
Additionally, it keeps the soil in a place with proper structure. Also, it prevents weeds development.
Though the available materials for an elevated garden bed are massive, plastics are a widely used item. Using plastics as a liner doesn’t allow pests to come inside the bed. Also, chemicals and other toxic materials can’t touch the plants since the liner works as a disruptor.
So, which type of plastic you shouldn’t use for the liner? Skip using non-porous plastic because an excessive amount of water retention will occur. Moreover, this type of plastic drives away helpful worms and insects.
You can grow 4 or 5 tomato plants in a 4×4 elevated garden bed. But if you want to grow indeterminate tomato varieties, you can grow up to 3 tomato plants in this bed size. Indeterminate tomato varieties require more space.
They need around 2.5-3′ feet of space. However, determinate tomato types need 18-24 inches apart. Indeterminate tomato varieties can grow up 8-10 feet in height, while determinate tomato varieties can grow only 3-4 feet in height. However, both look almost the same.
So, how many tomato plants can I grow in a 4×4 raised bed depends on tomato variety, soil condition, and weather condition.
You can put various types of things on the bottom of a raised garden bed, such as
|Any organic material|
Why you should put something on the bottom of a raised garden bed? The primary reason is to prevent the growth of weeds, which slowdowns most plants growth. Creating a block between the ground and the raised garden bed keeps weeds away from reaching inside the plants’ soil.
Though you can use various materials as a liner, not all materials would be effective for you. It depends on what you have used for making your raised garden bed, the soil conditions, and the surrounding environment.
Building your own raised bed garden boxes provides several benefits.
Yes, you can buy raised garden boxes from online or directly physical stores. Amazon sells various types of raised garden boxes. Availability for elevated garden boxes differs in multiple sizes, shapes, designs, and colors. Their materials and prices are different too. Price ranges from $30 to $200 or even more.
So, should you buy ready-made raised garden boxes? It depends on your preferences. If you are don’t have much time to make of your DIY raised garden boxes and mind spending the extra money to own a quality garden box, you can purchase.
Most of them come in standard sizes. However, some manufacturers offer various sizes. If you don’t need too large or too small size, their standard version might be perfect for you.
Before purchasing a commercially available raised garden box, read some reviews and take suggestions from current users to learn whether it will be perfect for you or not. One of the crucial points that no one should overlook is what types of plants you want to grow on it. Decide based on it.
Improving the original DIY planter box design shouldn’t be a hassle.
The garden bed size depends on you. It can be simple, like 2 inches tall and 4 inches wide. However, choosing a raised bed garden box with a minimum of 6 inches high is considered a standard size.
Here, we will create DIY Raised Bed Garden Boxes with a 4-foot by 6-foot by 10-1/2-inch dimension.
At first, use a marker to mark the area before cutting. Measure precisely. In order to create corner posts, you want to cut the boards 2 x 4s. Make sure you cut them accordingly to retain a perfect bed wall. If you prefer to make the wall more solid, cut and add posts to make it thicker.
The boards should be closed tightened for every wall. Install the wallboards under the corners posts; a 6′ wall is flush with each end, and walls with shorter lengths should be spaced 1-1/2 inches apart. Create holes on the corner posts and attach nuts and bolts inside them. Attach the extra corner posts if you have cut them.
Next, you want to create pilot holes and attach all sides of the wood with screws to make it a box. Make sure to keep the posts on the internal part of the box.
Mark all the areas where you want to set up the Raised Bed Garden Box. Take off grasses from the spot. Adding a final finish to the frame is a rule of thumb.
Keep the frame on your desired area, and mark the spot using a shovel. Should you make the area a hard surface? Using concrete is a better option since it provides a sound drainage system and ensures decent root growth.
After marking the place, keep the frames nearby. Start removing grass from the area. Use a spading fork to loosen soils. It will encourage your plant roots to grow as much as possible.
Before setting up the frames, finally, you have a task to do. Put a wide-mesh hardware cloth on the beneath of the frame and fasten it properly. Instead of including hard surfaces, this type of material is better. It allows earthworms to enter inside the bed while preventing weeds from occupying the space.
Aside from that, you can use other materials—which we have mentioned above. However, monitor the soil regularly to inspect weed growth inside the bed.
Using heavy-duty plastic on the bed surface is necessary if the wood doesn’t have rot-resistant properties.
Making the raised bed garden box is complete. Now, you want to add high-quality soil with the correct amount of fertilizers or composts and plant your preferred plants.
Water the plants thoroughly. Choose a perfect time to water. Morning hours are the more preferred time since there is reduced water evaporation in the sun.
That’s all the steps to follow to know about “How to build your own raised bed garden boxes?”
Are you still wondering about “How to build a grow box for vegetables?” We have outlined it step-by-step. Make sure you follow the step correctly. Choose high-quality woods that will be durable and are prone to fungal issues. Selecting the correct plants is also essential. Your current location may not be suitable to use the particular plants you want to grow. Choose only those plants that are easy to grow in your area on the grow box. Happy Gardening!
Last update on 2023-01-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
About Lee Safin
Lee Safin was born near Sacramento, California on a prune growing farm. His parents were immigrants from Russia who had fled the Bolshevik Revolution. They were determined to give their children a better life than they had known. Education was the key for Lee and his siblings, so they could make their own way in the world. Lee attended five universities, where he studied plant sciences and soil technologies. He also has many years of experience in the U.S. Department of Agriculture as a commercial fertilizer formulator.