Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Inspiration in Some Moldy 2X4's

In ongoing efforts to beautify and vegetate our little yard, we came across some moldy 2x4's and decided to use them to define a small planting bed.

A cordless reciprocating saw is extremely useful in apartment (and otherwise) living:

Once my boards were cut to length (as defined by my planting bed edges) I simply cut a little groove in which I would set the boards. Always call before you dig.

Here's the idea:

It turned out that a previous tenant had laid some sort of peaty material down and I found it as I worked the soil in the bed (see the big organic-looking chunks):

I worked this peaty material into the underlying mineral soil (so that the peat would break down faster and release nutrients):

Why not add a bag of potting soil if you've got it lying around?:

Work that into the peat/mineral mixture:

And we've got a nice little planting bed. I watered it down, let it soak overnight, watered it again, worked it a bit more, let it drain and then was ready to plant:


  1. Do you think the cinder blocks have affected the soil acidity?

  2. We planted greens, chiles, black-eyed peas and some sunflowers. We'll see....

    I don't suspect a problem w/the cinder blocks because the peaty stuff will acidify things a bit. High pH is a fight in arid lands, in general, so we'll see. I need to get a better understanding of the soils here, that's for sure!


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