Starting a Square-Foot Garden

Start a Square Foot GardenIt’s been two years in the making, but I finally got my first square-foot garden up and running! I am by no means an expert, but I wanted to give you a first look at my setup.

Square Foot GardenSquare-foot garden boxes are pretty simple to make, and there are many tutorials out there on how to make them. But, my mom bought me this square-foot garden kit from Home Depot so that is what I used. You just slide the planks into the grooves on the corner posts.

The garden is 4’x4′ and about 8 inches tall. I wanted at least 6-inches of dirt, so using this calculator I determined that I needed 8 cubic feet of soil to fill it. Based on some research I did online, and the fact that I didn’t want to spend a fortune on dirt, I decided to fill my garden with a mixture of top soil, potting soil and compost. We’ll see if it works out!

Square Foot Garden MapBefore I began planting I used my garden map to determine where everything was going to go. I knew I wanted the lettuce and spinach to be in between the taller plants so they would get a little bit of shade. And I’ve heard that basil is a good companion plant for tomatoes so I wanted them near each other.

The calendula isn’t for eating; it’s a type of marigold and purportedly a natural insect and pest repellent.

I use the Gardener’s Supply Company site to determine how many of each plant can fit into a square foot.

You can print out a garden map and other Garden Journal items here.

Square Foot GardenTo mark my grid lines, I used twine and short roofing nails that had large flat heads. I’m sure it would be easier with a staple gun, but I made do with the supplies I found in the house. At each 1-foot mark I hammered a nail halfway in, then tied the twine around the nail, and hammered the nail the rest of the way in so the head of the nail held down the twine.

Above is the finished product, though I forgot to take a picture until after I had already planted my first tomato. Also, bonus Pug!

Square Foot GardenAnd this is after everything had been planted and watered. Unfortunately, life happened and I wasn’t able to start all my plants from seed indoors this year. So, I purchased a tomato, cherry tomato and pepper plant from a local nursery. The rest of the squares have direct-sown seeds.

Square Foot Garden PugCheck back to see how my square-foot garden progresses. Also, now that I have a garden started I will be detailing how I create and maintain my Garden Journal. Happy Gardening!

PS: If you don’t have the space or inclination to do a full on garden, check out my old posts on my patio container garden from when I lived in a townhouse!

Linking up with: Ginger Snap Crafts, Creative Geekery, Liz Marie Blog, Design Dining and Diapers, The 36th Avenue, Lil Luna, Sugar Bee Crafts