Thank you for joining our Home Depot Community. This is Ricks Picks. I work in the Garden Department for the West Coast Home Depot. I have been doing container gardening for the past 7 years. It is similar to a raised garden project but on a slightly smaller scale. When choosing a soil for your raised garden bed, you have a couple of ways to go. If the soil you have dug out of your raised bed in the process of tilling and loosening up the soil is of good quality, then by all means use that soil along with some other good quality soils available at the Home Depot. In addition to the Miracle Gro Garden Soil, many of The Home Depots also carry a product by Kellogg called All Natural GARDEN SOIL and All Natural N’RICH compost. To be sure that there is enough air in your raised garden bed, I would also recommend another product by Kellogg called Patio Plus. The Patio Plus has some perlite in it which will help add air to your raised garden and give additional drainage. Miracle Gro also has a 2 cu ft bag of potting soil as well as a 2.5 cu ft bag of Garden Soil which can also be used in your raised garden.
The two Kellogg soils, All Natural Garden Soil and All Natural N’RICH compost, come in a 3 cubic foot bail and the Patio Plus is a 1 1/2 cu ft bag, which may only be available from Arizona to California. If your soil is a loam type mixture then you can mix the above soils can be mixed on a one to one basis. If you have a more clay type soil base then you will want to increase your mixture rate to a 3:1 mix, that is, one shovel full of native soil to 3 shovels full of soil mix. Keep in mind that a hard pack type of soil will not drain well and will hold onto water and nutrients and make it difficult for your plants to grow. It is very important to amend this type of soil in order to achieve a healthy garden.
Most soils could use some type of an amendment. You will want to spread several inches of your selected garden soil on top of your native soil and mix it into the ground about 4-6 inches. Continue to spread and mix your soil amendment into your raised garden until you are about 3-4 inches from the top. Water your soil to allow for settling. You may need to add another 1-3 inches of garden soil to your raised bed if your soil has settled too much. Try to keep that 3-4 inch edge around your raised garden bed. Remember, that as you place your plants into the bed, you will be removing soil from each hole, thus adding more soil to your raised garden bed. To try an calculate about how much soil you will need to buy. A 3 cubic foot bail will cover about 18 sq ft to a depth of about one inch of unmixed soil. Product availability will depend on your area. Currently Kellogg Products are only available in the western portion of the United States. Check with your local Home Depot for quality products in your area.
When planting your vegetables, be aware of the rooting activities of your plants. Tomatoes for example are deep rooting veggies that will require more and deeper watering than your radishes, carrots and other herbs. The tomatoes will also take up more space so do not crowd them with some of the smaller, lower growing vegetables.
To help repel insects, it is a great idea to add plants such as marigolds around the border of your raised garden.
Be sure to take some video or your project as it progresses along and share it with the rest of the community.
It is never too early to start growing your plants from seed. If it is too cold outside to plant seed, then you can always use a grow light and a heated planting tray inside the house to give your seedlings a head start. Once the weather warms up, you will have had a head start for your plantings. Instead of putting seeds in the ground and waiting for them to grow, you will already have vegetables that have a 4-8 week head start. I know this winter has been tough for a lot of you, but what a great way to welcome in the spring weather with an indoor mini greenhouse that is full of garden vegetables and herbs, ready to plant in your freshly prepared garden. Be the first one on your block to have fresh tomatoes, cucumbers and zucchini!
So are you READY? Lets Garden!