Well crap! I typed this in once and it failed. Let me try it again...
So....There is a gardening class in the town where I work. If a person attends 2 classes (or says they will) and is willing to talk about how their garden is doing, and is willing to share any knowledge he/she has, then the person gets the bits and supplies to make a 4x8x1foot raised bed! Very cool. And very nice.
I've already attended more than 2 classes, talked to people about my garden bed (like that it existed...) and volunteered to teach 2 classes (vermicomposting and fermenting).
Here is the basic bed:
As you can see, I put rotted wood in the bottom. This is supposed to help it hold moisture and require less watering over dry periods. It will also slowly decompose and build soil rich in organic matter. This is a twist on Sepp Holzers big permaculture beds that have whole tree trunks in them. On top of this I put composted manure (from bags since I don't have a handy animal source). I want something available to work with the carbon in the wood. As an afterthought, I threw in some old dry deer bones, mostly ribs, that had been lying around the land for a year or so. My hope is this will add calcium and minerals over the years. Who knows.
Here it is with some of the manure and another experimental addition:
The rails will do many things...they stabilize the corners and link the upper and lower 2x6 bed frames. They are also there to hold plastic, shade stuff, anti-critter-netting, or anything else I want.
And no...the camper is NOT that far off level.
Finally, here it is with some dirt, and manure and compost (all from bags) and ready to be soaked before planting. It's best to soak the wood down early and it wasn't supposed to rain for a while. That meant hauling buckets from the creek. It's not far.
I added more dirt over the next few days. continued adding water with buckets.
Then I got some "clear" (actually whitish) 4ml plastic and put it right on the soil to warm it up.
I didn't take a photo of that for some reason but it looks like plastic lying on garden bed.
Next episode: Organizing and planting the bed.