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Thread: Is Vegetable Gardening Worth It?

  1. #31
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    My raised beds have deteriorated over the years although I used pressure treated lumber. Every 3 years I fallow any given section, but I got lazy and stopped making compost. At one point I was even collecting waste at the office, but I never seemed to make enough in my bin for my medium sized garden. My soil is clayey and I've bought truckloads of topsoil before. I just think it is not meant to be a break even activity for me, and this is why when other parts of the US opened up to settlement farmers left New England and its ledge in droves.

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yppej View Post
    My raised beds have deteriorated over the years although I used pressure treated lumber. Every 3 years I fallow any given section, but I got lazy and stopped making compost. At one point I was even collecting waste at the office, but I never seemed to make enough in my bin for my medium sized garden. My soil is clayey and I've bought truckloads of topsoil before. I just think it is not meant to be a break even activity for me, and this is why when other parts of the US opened up to settlement farmers left New England and its ledge in droves.
    Clay soil needs to be made lighter and does take more time to develop into good garden soil. Topsoil helps but also need to amend with lots of compost and peat moss to make it lighter. Think 1/3 each. Good garden soil takes 3-5years to create.

    You could consider raised beds to get what you want. We recycled boards from a falling down structure to make ours. You can then "harvest" all that expensive topsoil into those raised beds and amend with compost and peat moss and you'll be well on your way.

    Think small. What do you WANT to grow? Make just 1 or 2 beds first year and grow from there. Our gardens have been a work in progress for many years. Just last year we put in another raised bed when I thought we were done.

  3. #33
    Senior Member Rogar's Avatar
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    A friend recently tore down his deteriorating raised beds and rebuilt them using the same boards they use for composite decking. He was able to find a place that sold left over odds and ends for a discount. They are expensive otherwise, but probably last almost forever.

    My neighbor, who is referred to as the "tomato king" mulches leaves into his mower catcher in the fall and rototills them into his garden. That's an abundant source of organic material. Of course then you need a rototiller. I picked up a small electric one that was new/refurbished off Amazon for less than a hundred dollars. It's not exactly industrial, but does the job.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rogar View Post
    My neighbor, who is referred to as the "tomato king" mulches leaves into his mower catcher in the fall and rototills them into his garden. That's an abundant source of organic material. Of course then you need a rototiller. I picked up a small electric one that was new/refurbished off Amazon for less than a hundred dollars. It's not exactly industrial, but does the job.
    Tilling disturbs lots of microbes in the soil and is not recommended. Layering brown with compost is preferred.

  5. #35
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    I would also need a lawn mower, and a new shed to store it in due to building codes.

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