We got the last raised bed in the park strip done this weekend. We still have to add the mulch around the outside, and add some compost to the soil.
The park strip “before”, with just 2 raised beds:
First I loosened up the sod/weeds with my pitchfork. I think the pitchfork does a better job than a regular shovel for loosening the grass and roots and making it easy to lift it up and shake out the dirt. We removed all the sod and weeds around the perimeter of where the raised bed would be. The wooden stakes showed us where the raised bed would be and where our neighbor’s yard started.
Lift. Shake. Toss. Repeat.
Since this is a very public spot of our garden, we opted to use nicer boards, some 2x10s . In the rest of the yard we use regular 2x4s.
To fit nicely in the park strip with our fruit trees, we made all of these raised beds 4 feet by 10 feet. I don’t like raised beds to be wider than 4 feet, or else I can’t reach things easy enough. Also, 4 feet works nicely when you are using 2x4s (which is what we usually use), because its just half of their length (half of eight feet).
My husband put together the bed using some scrap pieces of wood for supports in the corners and along the length of the bed like spikes, which help keep the bed in place and the sides from bowing. (The bed frame is upside down in this picture.)
We took the frame over to where we wanted it to be, then dug out soil for the posts and along the edges so that the whole thing would rest a few inches below ground level.
Once the frame was positioned where we wanted it, we did some double digging and buried the sod as deep as we could, and upside down.
And this is the final product: