Magazine article Sunset

Full of Vegetables, This Raised Bed Is Easy to Water, Maintain, Harvest

Magazine article Sunset

Full of Vegetables, This Raised Bed Is Easy to Water, Maintain, Harvest

Article excerpt

Full of vegetables, this raised bed is easy to water, maintain, harvest

This raised vegetable bed makes handsome use of a sunny side yard. For owners Robert and Diane Mills of Fresno, California, it grows a summer bounty of vegetables and herbs: 6 tomato plants, 6 eggplants, 12 peppers, 3 hills of zucchini squash, a 10-foot row of pole beans, plus perennial chives, oregano, rosemary, sage, and thyme, and annual plantings of basil and parsley.

Built of overlapped railroad ties anchored with steel rods, the box stands 24 inches high. It measures 8 feet, 8 inches wide and 16 feet, 8 inches long. Slumpstone pavers set in sand provide clean footing all around, so after-work gardeners can pick dinner vegetables quickly without changing into garden shoes.

The Mills outfitted the bed with a dripwatering system. By adding a timer (theirs is a combination timer-valve, shown in the photograph at left) to the control head, they can set it manually to water from 5 to 60 minutes. When they're away on vacation, plant-sitting friends need only to set the timer for them. …

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