With the arrival of spring, many novice gardeners think about how to make beds... Indeed, in fact, there are several types of ridges: warm, high, multi-level, ridges-boxes or pits. What type of beds to choose for a particular culture, how to organize the structure correctly and what are its advantages? We will try to give answers to all these questions in the proposed article.
Warm ridges are built by gardeners who strive to get the first spring harvest of vegetables as early as possible. In a sense, they are an alternative to greenhouses and greenhouses. The principle of operation of such ridges is to use the heat obtained during the decomposition of organic matter.
A warm ridge can be laid in a trench or box. The height of the sides of the structure should be approximately 50 cm. The width of the ridges can be varied. So, you can create narrow ridges 40-60 cm wide, or wide 100-120 cm. Each gardener chooses the length of the ridges independently. The sides of a warm bed can be made of slate, boards, timber. A metal mesh should be placed at the bottom of the structure, which will become a barrier to the entry of rodents.
After warm bed box created, you need to fill it with layers in the following sequence:
- Sawdust is placed at the bottom of the box. Before use, they are scalded with boiling water and spilled with a manganese solution. The thickness of the sawdust layer should be at least 15 cm. During the use of the ridges, the sawdust will retain moisture and feed the plants with it. It is worth noting that when constructing warm ridges on clayey soil, the lower layer should be a drainage consisting of large wood residues.
- The second layer is laid with organic debris, for example, foliage or turf mixed with manure or bird droppings. After laying, the layer is tamped, subsequently it will warm up the upper layers of the soil. Its thickness should not be less than 15 cm.
- The third layer should be composed of rapidly decaying organic matter such as grass or ready-made compost. Its thickness should not be less than 10 cm.
- The fourth layer is a fertile filler. It should be made by mixing 6 buckets of garden soil (peat) and one bucket of processed sawdust and sand. It is also necessary to add superphosphate, wood ash in the amount of 1 tablespoon to the resulting substrate, as well as urea, zinc sulfate, potassium sulfate in the amount of 1 teaspoon. The thickness of this fertile layer of earth must be at least 20 cm.
You can make beds in the garden in autumn or spring. Autumn ridges are overheated in winter in a natural way, but you can accelerate the process of decay in the beds created in spring with the help of special preparations, for example, "Baikal-M" or "Shining". They contain a large number of beneficial bacteria, the vital activity of which contributes to the accelerated decay of organic matter.
It is worth noting that warm ridges can be equipped not only in open areas of soil, but also in greenhouses, hotbeds. Information on how this can be done is shown in the video:
Warm ridges can be used for 4 years, after which they should be dismantled. Over time, the microelement composition and the intensity of warming up the soil in the box changes. That is why farmers recommend growing the following crops on them:
- In the first year of decay, organic matter generates a lot of heat and contains an increased amount of nitrogen. These conditions are great for growing cucumbers, watermelons, pumpkins, zucchini and squash.Root crops cannot be grown in such conditions.
- In the second year of operation, it is recommended to plant cucumbers, tomatoes, eggplants, cabbage, peppers on warm ridges,
- In the third year of use, warm ridges are suitable for growing all types of crops, including root crops, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, eggplants.
- In the last fourth year, the content of nutrients in the soil is significantly reduced, which means that the ridges are unsuitable for growing thermophilic crops, however, roots, legumes, onions and greens will feel great in such conditions.
Heat-loving crops can be planted on warm ridges in early spring. Additionally, you can protect them from the cold using a film cover on arcs.
Another popular type of garden beds is high ridges. They are intended for the cultivation of vegetable crops in areas located in swampy areas and in rainy regions, as they provide good drainage.
Ridges are called tall, with a height of 30 to 80 cm. When creating high ridges, it is necessary to build a box. The material for this can be a wood board, brick, plastic, metal. The process of erecting high ridges consists of the following stages:
- A metal mesh is placed at the bottom of the box as obstacles for rodents and geotextiles, which will not allow weedy herbs to sprout.
- On top of the protective materials, it is necessary to put a drainage layer consisting of crushed stone, expanded clay, pebbles or brick fragments. The height of this layer must be at least 10 cm.
- Fill a high ridge box with a homogeneous, fertile soil, free of weeds and larvae of harmful insects. So, for filling it is better to use purchased soil or clean the fertile soil yourself by sifting and spilling with a solution of potassium permanganate. The soil layer should fill the entire bed, to a depth below 3-4 cm of the upper edge of the side.
Making high beds with your own hands is not at all difficult. Moreover, they can grow any types of plants. You can see an example of an originally made high bed in the photo:
High ridges guarantee good soil drainage, facilitate weeding and plant care, and are highly decorative. This type of beds allows you to grow heat-loving plants in regions with an unfavorable climate.
This type of bed is the classic and most common. To create such ridges, no special structures are needed. Such beds in the country with your own hands are not at all difficult to make. This requires only a shovel.
Ridges with a height of 10-20 cm are considered raised, without a special box. Depending on the preferences of the gardener, their width can be narrow 50 cm or wide 100 cm.Trenches between the beds are made with a shovel, digging grooves at least 30 cm wide.The edges of such a bulk ridge are compacted with claps of the same shovel.
These raised ridges are great for growing absolutely any crop. They are easy to water but not very convenient to weed. When placing the beds, you should take into account the peculiarities of the different cardinal points. So, thermophilic crops should be placed in the south, where daylight is maximum.
It is worth noting that with the help of raised beds, it is easy to create beautiful, original forms that can become a real decoration of the site.
In addition to the above species, there are other, more "exotic" beds. The most famous of them are:
- boxes, which differ from ordinary raised ridges by the presence of a frame made of wooden boards, stones, slate;
- pits are designed for growing moisture-loving, tall crops;
- multi-tiered ridges are used mainly for growing crops with an underdeveloped root system for decorative purposes.
An example of how an unusual garden bed can decorate a summer cottage is shown in the photo below.
Basic principles of the device
Having determined the required type of garden bed, the farmer must also familiarize himself with the basic principles of its placement in the garden:
- It is very important to arrange the beds on the cardinal points: the most thermophilic crops, such as tomatoes, cucumbers, eggplants, must be planted in the south, while dill, basil and other greens will feel good in the northern shade.
- To place the ridges, you should choose the most even piece of land, where the streams of water will not wash away the crops, but are evenly absorbed into the soil.
- Garden beds in high, hilly areas receive the maximum amount of light;
- Using fertile soil when creating ridges, you can count on the maximum yield of vegetables;
- The aisles between the beds should be wide enough so that the movement of a person is not impeded, and growing crops in the vicinity do not shade each other.
- Garden beds with a frame are more reliably protected from the penetration of weeds;
- On low terrain, when creating beds, it is necessary to provide for the presence of drainage; in arid regions, on the contrary, it is recommended to place the beds in recesses.
When creating beds in your personal plot or cottage, it is imperative to take into account the above principles. They will make it easier to care for the plants and allow you to get the maximum yield of vegetables.
It is impossible to unequivocally answer the question of how to make the beds in the garden correctly, because there is a huge variety of different types of structures for growing vegetables. All of them can be used in specific conditions. So, you can get an early spring harvest without having a greenhouse and a greenhouse with the help of warm beds, while tall or multi-level beds will allow you to create a real architectural masterpiece for decorating a garden. The choice of this or that design always remains with the gardener.