West Front Box Complete

Well I finally finished the west front box as you can see. Actually it ended up being quite a bit larger than I had previously anticipated. On my Excel spreadsheet I had made it a 4×3 box however, the final product was a 7×4 box. This actually will be quite helpful as some of the plants that we should have already planted in the east front box have not been planted but with a larger west front box most of them can be placed over here. And interesting discovery that I found while excavating and leveling the dirt was that the garden arch is fixed in place with concrete! Yes they poured concrete to keep the arch in place. The problem is that the arch is bent and needs to be straightened out and I was going to remove the arch, lay it on a flat slab and pound it back into shape. Since it can no longer move I am going to have to figure out a new way of getting it straight. Suggestions are welcomed! 

In addition to working on these boxes I have been clearing out quite a few blackberry bushes from the garden so that it is less risky traveling to the compost heap. When removing blackberries the most important thing to remember is to get rid of the roots. If you just cut the stems it just seems to encourage them to grow bigger and thornier then before. The previous owners had laid down landscaping cloth in most places so most of the blackberries came out very easily however some in the wetter areas brought up a lot of muck with the roots and so they were quite heavy even if the dirt came off rather easily. While I was out there finish the box and cleaning the area I found this cute young little woodpecker listening to trees and grabbing a few of the insects on the outside before flying off somewhere else.

Down in the field the cherry tree is really awake now and the leaves are busting forth so at the end of march I should have a very pretty cherry tree to admire. The peach tree is still dormant but they usually start later anyway so no worries yet. Just all this warm weather gets that gardening bug in me going and I get so excited especially with all the sprouts indoors that I will need to start hardening off soon. In a week or two a lot of the cold-resistant plants are going to be transplanted into these new boxes.

And finally for a full appreciation of the work going into the box redesign here is the entire process in pictures. One thing to note is that since the boxes are bigger and they are terraced I needed to take blocks from the other beds to complete this one. Eventually I will have to decide if I am going to buy more blocks or use another method to hold make by beds or reduce the number of beds. 





First you have to dig out an area larger than the block you are going place.
You then place the block in and level it with respect to the other block and then side to side, front to back and on the diagonal.
Once you lay all the blocks down to the proper height you fill with fill dirt until you filled it to the point where the rest will be filled with your growing soil. In our case Mel’s mix.
You then lay landscaping cloth to separate your nice dirt from the fill dirt. In my case I held the landscaping cloth down by placing the last row of blocks on top of the cloth. You then fill it in with your growing soil and place the grid down. Now you have a block made square foot garden.
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