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Re: raised bed questions raised

Most ACGA listserv gardeners are organic oriented so mentioning pressured treated (PT) wood is not viewed well in this community.  In CASA's GardenAngel Program, originally, I used cedar timbers.  When I ran out of this material, I did build a couple of raised beds with PT but have since decided to use regular lumber.  I plan to stain each piece with a solid color stain (2 coats) (Behr Solid Color Stain from Home Depot) for protection.  For the long run, regular lumber will not last long. As far as options, locust is great.  Cypress should work well.  Normal store bought wood is pine which is a low density composition, therefore its life is limited.  As a general rule, the heavier or denser the wood, the longer it will last.

As far as using recycled plastic, we have used them as the cap for our raised beds.  Our beds are made of concrete blocks, so they will still be in production long after everyone on this listserve has went to that great CG in the sky. Please review at...   http://www.casagarden.com/rotary.htm

Recycled plastic comes at a premium price.  Using concrete blocks and having the expertise to lay them is also something to consider.

Many times it comes down to budget constaints.  If you have a small budget, then it comes down to how resourceful you are at acquiring materials.  I've found that poor folks or those who come from a poor background (such as myself) are normally more resourceful than those well off.   

Good luck going forward with your raised beds,



---------- Original Message ----------------------------------
From: Bob Krider <bkrider@zoomtown.com>
Reply-To: 3278.Compton.Rd.@mallorn.com
Date: Tue, 8 Jul 2003 19:50:09 -0400

>#1 does anyone have any definitive or 1st hand info 
>on the use of treated wood in raised beds?
>#2 has anynoe used the newer composit/plastic 
>type psuedo-wood for raised beds?
>#3 enjoy the little parable
>Bob Krider
>GOD: Frank, you know all about gardens and 
>What in the world is going on down there on that 
>planet Earth? What happened to the dandelions, 
>violets, thistle and stuff I started eons ago? I had a 
>perfect, no-maintenance garden plan. Those 
>plants grow in any type of soil, with stand drought
>and multiply with abandon. The nectar from the 
>long lasting blossoms attracts butterflies, honey 
>bees and flocks of songbirds. I expected to see a 
>vast garden of    colors by now. But all I see are 
>these green rectangles.
>ST. FRANCIS: It's the tribes that settled there, 
>The Suburbanites. They started calling your 
>flowers "weeds" and went to great lengths to kill 
>them and replace them with grass.
>GOD: Grass? But it's so boring. It's not colorful. It 
>doesn't attract butterflies, birds and bees, only 
>grubs and sod worms. It's sensitive to 
>temperatures. Do these Suburbanites really want 
>all that grass growing there?
>ST. FRANCIS: Apparently so, LORD. They go to 
>great pains to grow it and keep it green. They begin 
>each spring by fertilizing grass and poisoning any 
>other plant that crops up in the lawn.
>GOD: The spring rains and warm weather probably 
>make grass grow really fast. That must make the 
>Suburbanites happy.
>ST. FRANCIS: Apparently not, LORD. As soon as it 
>grows a little, they cut it -- sometimes twice a week.
>GOD: They cut it? Do they then bail it like hay?
>ST. FRANCIS: Not exactly, LORD. Most of them 
>rake it up and put it in bags.
>GOD: They bag it? Why? Is it a cash crop? Do they 
>sell it?
>ST. FRANCIS: No, Sir. Just the opposite. They pay 
>to throw it away.
>GOD: Now let me get this straight. They fertilize 
>grass so it will grow. And when it does grow, they 
>cut it off and pay to throw it away?
>ST. FRANCIS: Yes, Sir.
>GOD: These Suburbanites must be relieved in the 
>summer when we cut back on the rain and turn up 
>the heat.
>That surely slows the growth and saves them a lot 
>of work.
>ST. FRANCIS: You aren't going to believe this 
>LORD. When the grass stops growing so fast, they 
>drag out hoses and pay more money to water it so 
>they can continue to mow it and pay to get rid of it.
>GOD: What nonsense. At least they kept some of 
>the trees. That was a sheer stroke of genius, if I do 
>say so myself. The trees grow leaves in the spring 
>to provide beauty and shade in the summer. In the 
>autumn they fall to the ground and form a natural 
>blanket to keep moisture in the soil and protect the 
>trees and bushes. Plus, as they rot, the leaves 
>form compost to enhance the soil. It's a natural 
>circle of life.
>ST. FRANCIS: You better sit down, LORD. The 
>Suburbanites have drawn a new circle. As soon as 
>the leaves fall, they rake them into great piles and 
>pay to have them hauled away.
>GOD: No. What do they do to protect the shrub and 
>tree roots in the winter and to keep the soil moist 
>and loose?
>ST. FRANCIS: After throwing away the leaves, they 
>go out and buy something which they call mulch. 
>They haul it home and spread it around in place of 
>the leaves.
>GOD: And where do they get this mulch?
>ST. FRANCIS: They cut down trees and grind them 
>up to make the mulch.
>GOD: Enough. I don't want to think about this 
>anymore. St. Catherine, you're in charge of the arts. 
>What movie have you scheduled for us tonight?
>ST. CATHERINE: 'Dumb and Dumber,' Lord. It's a 
>real stupid movie about....
>GOD: Never mind, I think I just heard the whole 
>story from St Francis.
>The American Community Gardening Association listserve is only one of ACGA's services to community gardeners. To learn more about the ACGA and to find out how to join, please go to http://www.communitygarden.org
>To post an e-mail to the list:  community_garden@mallorn.com
>To subscribe, unsubscribe or change your subscription:  https://secure.mallorn.com/mailman/listinfo/community_garden

The American Community Gardening Association listserve is only one of ACGA's services to community gardeners. To learn more about the ACGA and to find out how to join, please go to http://www.communitygarden.org

To post an e-mail to the list:  community_garden@mallorn.com

To subscribe, unsubscribe or change your subscription:  https://secure.mallorn.com/mailman/listinfo/community_garden

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