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Hello fellow ladies of the best circle (don't let the others know!) I come seeking advice! Help!

I am getting keys to my forever home next week. It's a beautiful 1920's house I can give lots of love and wull own outright. I'm needless to say: extra excited and feeling very liberated.

The garden needs a lot of love and soil remediation, and I'll surely be begging for your wisdom on it soon but I want to start with outdoor food containers. I would like them to be elevated as chronic pain makes kneeling / stooping very painful.

Questions:

  1. I would like to grow chard, carrots, zucchini, yellow squash, and small potatoes (the finger sort). Ideas on depth of the raised planter? I was thinking two feet but I can't find any root length information for food crops....
  2. Since I live in a desert and will be moving from a zone 13 to zone 9b/10a am I going overboard in having the containers under a cover? I'll have a long side deck off my kitchen I would like to use. This should provide shade. FYI my UV index rating at my new home will be an 8 (I am in a 10 to 10+ area now).
  3. Has anyone ever "plumbed" their containers? I want to put in a drain at the bottom of each and then let that water drain off onto the ground where I can plant a fruit bearing tree that can use the excess. Any particular angling needed to ensure gravity "works" and they can all drain together?
  4. The community In moving to is very small and has cooperative food gardening, any high yield container crops I may be missing that might allow me to contribute extra crop and is nutritionally dense?

I've been collecting seeds and starting research but sometimes exposure to those with experience is best so I'm hoping some of you have ideas on how to help make my crazy plan work.

Thank you in advance!

Hello fellow ladies of the best circle (don't let the others know!) I come seeking advice! Help! I am getting keys to my forever home next week. It's a beautiful 1920's house I can give lots of love and wull own outright. I'm needless to say: extra excited and feeling very liberated. The garden needs a lot of love and soil remediation, and I'll surely be begging for your wisdom on it soon but I want to start with outdoor food containers. I would like them to be elevated as chronic pain makes kneeling / stooping very painful. Questions: 1. I would like to grow chard, carrots, zucchini, yellow squash, and small potatoes (the finger sort). Ideas on depth of the raised planter? I was thinking two feet but I can't find any root length information for food crops.... 2. Since I live in a desert and will be moving from a zone 13 to zone 9b/10a am I going overboard in having the containers under a cover? I'll have a long side deck off my kitchen I would like to use. This should provide shade. FYI my UV index rating at my new home will be an 8 (I am in a 10 to 10+ area now). 3. Has anyone ever "plumbed" their containers? I want to put in a drain at the bottom of each and then let that water drain off onto the ground where I can plant a fruit bearing tree that can use the excess. Any particular angling needed to ensure gravity "works" and they can all drain together? 4. The community In moving to is very small and has cooperative food gardening, any high yield container crops I may be missing that might allow me to contribute extra crop and is nutritionally dense? I've been collecting seeds and starting research but sometimes exposure to those with experience is best so I'm hoping some of you have ideas on how to help make my crazy plan work. Thank you in advance!

9 comments

[–] LepistaNuda 5 points (+5|-0) Edited

What I have done as a workaround to the cost of containers and to improve my soil and soil depth in a rocky spot is to take up straw bale gardening for the first year or 2 in the space.There is info online, but basically, you get a couple of bales, wet them down good, fertilize, then put about 4" soil on them and plant. I've improved the soil nicely over the spots this has been done and I no longer need to put bales there. I've expanded my garden this year so I have a bunch of new bales in the space opposite. I'd try the shade cover too if I were in your shoes, but up here in the PNW we need every drop of sun we got, LOL. I'll probably just mulch with straw to keep moisture in this summer.

edit to add: Congratulations on the new home!

[–] gold_bee 4 points (+4|-0)

I've never heard about straw bale gardening before - what a cool idea! Thanks for sharing :)

[–] HollaHollaRa 3 points (+3|-0)

(You can also look up lasagna or hugelkultur gardening. I probably won't ever dig another garden bed. There are a few options that improve the soil at the same time.)

[–] onelightbulb 2 points (+2|-0)

Yes! Lasagna method within large wooden boxes would be my recommendation for OP if it’s possible.

[–] gold_bee 2 points (+2|-0)

I just love the name lasagna gardening! I'm basically living on a pile of rocks with dirt packed in between the rocks so I appreciate all these clever techniques to create and improve soil.