3 Garden Renovation Tips

comments (0) May 26th, 2015

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jgthegardener jgthegardener, member
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Click To Enlarge Photo: Life of Pix

Do you love gardening, but you're limited in technique? There are a few possible reasons you abandoned traditional gardening. The soil could be too rocky or sandy, or maybe it's been tainted with blight spores.

I've been forced to use raised beds for years and, while I love them, I've had enough of glorified container gardening. If your yard is riddled with fungal disease or rocky terrain, a deep renovation will enable a complete garden redo.

Bring Back Traditional Gardening

Even if your soil is good enough for a traditional garden, why should you bother? Well, growing directly in the soil means there won't be a need to rebuild retaining walls for raised beds every few years. There's also less risk of the soil drying out during the hottest parts of the season.

Think of the costs, too. Bagged soil gets expensive, especially since you'll have to replace it every few years. If you're trying to feed more than a single person, you're going to need a lot of soil and a lot of raised beds. Yes, square-foot gardening works wonders, but you can use the same process without using raised beds.

Plus, old fashion gardening is stress relieving. Even the process of reducing waste and building a compost bin feels methodical, clean and good. If you're new to gardening, don't be afraid of a shovel. It's one of the most stress-relieving garden tools out there.

Prep the Soil

The problem with working in a rocky garden is that you never know where you can dig because of the many large rocks beneath the surface. In my case, I'd always seem to hit a rock that would take hours - or days - to remove. So for years I've used raised beds instead.

For my garden renovation, I called on a family friend and used rental equipment to rip out the rocks. In just over an hour, all rocks were removed and we used the same equipment to refill those holes with a mixture of compost I'd been saving, and topsoil of course.

If your garden has suffered from multiple reoccurrences of blight, you might want to try the same measure.

Reuse What You Can

There's no need to waste what you already have on hand. One of the perks of a raised bed is that you don't have to worry about compressing the soil with foot traffic. Address this issue early in your renovation project. Consider reusing the following:

·        Rocks: Use them to border your garden. If you have any giant rocks and don't want them as yard décor, don't hesitate to list them for sale and use the proceeds to offset renovation costs.

·        Wood: I saved the boards from my raised beds to use for paths through my garden.

·        Grass: If you started with sod, reuse it to make a garden path.

When choosing between paths, consider the maintenance. The rocks will be more difficult to move, but will last longer. Wood can be easily lifted out of the way for tilling. Grass can and will spread, so you'll have to keep your shovel handy at the beginning of every season.


Once you've got your base, you're ready to start planning what you want to grow. Remember to plan your crops in advance to enjoy a bountiful, traditional harvest in just a few months. 

posted in: Gardening, diy, renovations