To make your Vegetable Garden a success, start with the basics: the vegetable garden box. A good vegetable garden box is a sustainable investment for the coming years. You can easily make a vegetable garden box yourself. For example, make a tray on legs if you don’t have that much space. Then you can also put some stuff under it. In this blog, I will explain how to make the best vegetable garden box yourself and what you should pay attention to when buying one.
With good wood you can enjoy your vegetable garden box for a long time. Therefore choose sustainable woods that have been processed as little as possible. Would you prefer something other than wood? You can also think of recycled plastic, stone, curbs or braided willow toes. I made my first boxes from used scaffolding planks left after building our house. This looked nice, was cheap and sturdy.
When purchasing wood, also pay attention to the thickness of the boards. The thicker they are, the longer they will last.
Scaffolding planks are made of spruce wood. This is a cheaper type of storage and unfortunately did not last very long. After 5 years my vegetable garden boxes were completely rotted. That is why it is best to choose sustainable and high-quality wood that is at least 2 cm thick. A good type of wood is Douglas wood. This contains a lot of resin so that it lasts a long time without having to process it. Larch wood is also a fine type of wood, but pine and spruce wood do not last as long. If you prefer to sit well in one go and do not feel like making a box yourself, you can also buy a ready-made Easy Vegetable Garden box. The starter pack contains all the things you need to set up a vegetable garden yourself!
A standard vegetable garden box is 120 x 120 cm and is about 20 cm deep. Of course you can also choose other dimensions, but the inner size of your box must always be a multiple of 30 cm. For example, 120 by 60, 90 x 120, and so on. The compartments that will soon be placed in the box according to the Easy Vegetable Garden concept are 30 by 30 cm. I will tell you more about this further on. Do not forget to add the thickness of the wood to the 30 cm. For example, suppose you make a box of 120 by 120 with 3 cm thick shelves, you need 4 planks of 123 cm .
TIP: make sure that you can easily reach every compartment in the vegetable garden box. This way you can take care of all plants without having to stand in the box.
The construction of a vegetable garden box is very easy: screw 4 wooden planks together and put root cloth underneath. You just have to pay attention to how you connect the boards together so that your box becomes nice and sturdy. There are different types of corner joints that you can use. For my own first vegetable garden boxes. I screwed the wood together in the ‘cold’ way.
As you probably know, wood will work because of the moisture. Planks may warp or crack in them. You cannot prevent this because it sometimes rains or sometimes it is dry. It is always moist on the inside of the box. These differences cause the wood to warp. To prevent this, you should take a good look at how the grain of the wood runs and how you attach the planks. Below you can see how you can prevent warping.
The bottom of the vegetable garden box
If you want to put a vegetable garden box on your terrace or balcony, it is useful to make a bottom under it. Especially if you want to move the box or make legs under it, a bottom comes in handy. Fortunately, a bottom for the vegetable garden box is easy to make. You can do this in two ways:
Bottom with shelves
First screw a beam against two of the side boards. Place the planks on top of this, but not too tightly together so that the excess water can drain. Before you fill the box, first put a cloth on the bottom. So the soil in your vegetable garden box does not wash away.
This is the easiest way to make a bottom under your vegetable garden box. Buy a large board and make it the same size as the vegetable garden box. You screw this into the edges of the box. Use the best wood that can withstand moisture. Good woods are water-resistant MDF, concrete plex or trespa. If you have properly secured the plank, do not forget to drill about 12 large holes for drainage.
Legs under the vegetable garden box
A vegetable garden box at table height works well and saves space. I personally like it if the legs are made of the same wood as the box. The easiest way to make your own legs to your box is to attach two boards at each corner. Of course you can also choose ready-made legs and mount them to the box.
Wheels under the vegetable garden box
Do you not have enough sunlight in one place in the garden? Then wheels under your vegetable garden box are very useful. You can then move it to the sunniest spot in the garden. Also practical if you need space or are not sure where you want to place the box.
To prevent weeds that are still in the ground from coming up in your box, put a piece of anti-root cloth underneath. Make it 10 to 20 cm wider and longer than your box, place it on your chosen spot and place your box on it. Do you have a bottom? Then attach the cloth to the inside of the box.
Vegetable garden mix
After you have put the box together, fill it with a Garden Mix . It is suitable for all your plants and retains air and moisture at their roots. The only thing you have to add from time to time is some compost . So super durable!
With a grid you can divide the vegetable garden box into sections of 30 by 30 cm. It makes your garden clear and efficient and your vegetables get exactly the space they need to grow well.
You can make grids from strips of plastic, wooden slats, bamboo poles or slats from blinds.
I myself use white plastic strips of 2 cm wide. They look super tight, last endlessly, are easy to clean and are also flexible.
Just lay the grid loose on the earth. This is useful, because during the season it always drops a bit. The grid then just sinks. You can easily lift it a bit to add compost. And if you scoop out your entire box in the spring, just remove the grid.
When you have the vegetable garden box, the soil and the grid ready, you can start sowing.
More about the sowing in a later blog post!