The dream itself came eight years ago during my Master Composter/Recycler course. One of the presenters was Ron Berezan, The Urban Farmer. I'd never heard of raised bed gardening (or many of the fancy terms he used, like permaculture) up to that point, and was gardening in rows like my parents and grandparents. When Ron talked about how he raised food on his city lot, it made more sense than what I was doing. I was an instant convert, and signed out library books and started implementing some of the gardening practices Ron had mentioned. In doing so, our yields increased, and my hubby became a convert, too.
And now we're finally getting our garden to where I've always dreamed it could be. The soil for our raised beds is boxed in, preventing it from washing away or becoming compacted along the paths. The weeds that grow on the pathways won't be climbing up the sides and mixing in with the plants, and the soil above ground warms sooner and drains better. The pictures below tell the story of two weekends of good, hard labour.
First, we went out to the garden to plot how many garden boxes we would need to fill our space and still leave room to work near the compost bins.
After concluding that 17 more should suffice, we visited our local hardware stores for some 16 foot long floor joist boards, and bought the straightest ones we could find. Then we helped the guys at the store to cut our boards into 3 foot and five foot lengths using the big power saw, and carted home the pieces in our car. We took two weekends to do it, half at a time.