Starting a square foot garden this year
I am starting a square foot garden this year on the San Francisco peninsula with 3 4x4 beds. Since I have zero woodworking skills I ordered three cedar kits from the Square Foot Gardening website (squarefootgardening.com). In the book Mel talks about six inches of growing room, but when the boards came via UPS they were only 5 and a half inches. I asked folks at the office in Eden about this. They said when the lumber is cut it is six inches and then it shrinks- thus the 5 and a half inches. While this is understandable, it is also a bit disappointing to know I will be gardening in five and a half inches of soil instead of six.
I am really committed to making this work, and I note that set-up can be expensive. Buying the three 4x4 beds was 160 some dollars; and getting the soil components (peat moss, vermiculite and peat moss) for three beds topped $100. The hardest to get was the vermiculite, which was almost impossible to find on the San Francisco peninsula in large bags. Orchard Supply in South San Francisco had some large bags when I asked- but nothing in their gardening department indicated they might have large bags if you just looked around on your own. Orchard Supply in Millbrae did not have large bags, nor did Lowe's in San Bruno or Orchard Supply in Millbrae. The vermiculite cost me $18.98 for a 3.5 cubic foot bag.
After spending all this money I hope I get some mighty fine vegetables!