First completed project of the year!
Here’s how I did it…
- 48 lf. of rough sawn cedar 2×6’s (I got 3 2×6-16′ boards)
- 12 lf of rough sawn cedar 4×4’s (I got 2 4×4-8′ posts)
- 48 5/16 lag screws
- Drill w/ 7/16 socket
- Miter Saw
- Guy to dig post holes
Time: Once I had everything together, this was about a half a day project to build.
Cost: Approx $200 (The price of cedar is killer, isn’t it?)
Step 1: Cuttin’
Or you can buy the boards cut to length, but then how will you get that wonderful cedar sawdust smell in your shop?
This box is 4’x8′ and 12″ deep, so I needed the following board lengths:
- 4 2x6x8′ boards
- 4 2x6x4′ boards
- 6 4x4x2′ posts
Step 2: Drillin’
After the cutting part, the rest of it involves a lot of juice in your drill batteries, and that’s about it. I wanted something stronger than standard deck screws and after much debate in the “Nuts & Bolts” isle in the Depot I decided on the Spax 5/16 Exterior lag screw.
They aren’t crazy huge (I briefly considered 3/8″ stainless lag screws… but at $2 apiece? Not necessary.) but they are significantly sturdier to use, and the head shape prevents needing to put washers on.
I built the long sides first… so the top board was flush with the top and side of the 4×4. And I attached the top board to both end 4×4’s first. Then added the second board. I clamped the two boards together to make sure they were tight before I attached the second one… don’t want any soil seepage!
As you can see, I thought 2 screws per board were plenty on the long sides.
Then I attached another 4×4 in the middle of the 8′ sides for support… I waffled on this for bit, but I really wanted these to be solid structurally and the extra post definitely made a difference.
After both long sides we done. I stood them on end (upside-down) and attached the top short board flush with the top of the 4×4
In this case it was two screws securing the short board into the 4×4, and for good measure, one into the end long 2×6.
I put the top short board on both ends before going back and adding the second short board… just in case things didn’t line up right.
Even though cedar is a light wood… 48′ of it attached together, not easy to move. Which bodes well for the durability of my garden, not so much for my back.
Step 3: Diggin’
After worrying over the placement for a while a little orange spray paint helps mark where the holes should be dug.
The holes were about 12″ deep… and I suggest digging them even larger around because filling them back in with the posts in there was a pain.
I expect to build 3 more of these in the next couple of months… and two more next year. It’s gonna be quite a vegetable garden when I’m done.
Other ways to build this kind of thing:
- Erin @ Erin Covert*Hands On built a similar bed. I used it as a model for mine, but added additional screws and posts.
- A slightly different type of bed from eartheasy.com
- Or you can buy pre-made pieces. Naturalyards.com sells something this size for $265 +S&H
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