Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1   Report Post  
Old 28-03-2003, 05:20 PM
Dylan Keon
 
Posts: n/a
Default wood chips between raised beds?

Hi all,

We live in NW Oregon and have a 90' x 30' garden plot that we set up
last spring. It's split into several long raised beds with ~1.5' paths
in between. No boards or anything, just long mounds of soil with paths
in between.

The weeds are a real problem this spring. We tried planting a cover
crop (clover) last fall but it didn't grow that well. We now have a
heavy covering of weeds in both the beds and the paths. I'd like to
create weed free paths for this season (we'll weed and till the beds
when the weather dries up a bit, but I don't want to till the paths),
and also develop a plan for keeping the weeds from coming back in full
force next spring.

My plan for the beds is to use a heavy covering of leaves over all of
them next fall, which will keep the weeds down and will give us
something to till into the soil next spring. For the paths, I'm
currently thinking of weeding, covering with weed barrier cloth, and
then covering with a couple inches of wood chips. I think this idea is
pretty good, but I am concerned about: 1) tilling right next to the weed
barrier cloth, 2) the mess it might make as soil from the beds gets
mixed with the chips, and 3) what a pain it will be to clean up the
chips if we decide to reconfigure the garden.

So, after this long-winded explanantion...can anyone give advice about
using wood chips this way?

Thanks,
Dylan


  #3   Report Post  
Old 28-03-2003, 09:32 PM
paghat
 
Posts: n/a
Default wood chips between raised beds?

In article , Dylan Keon
wrote:

Hi all,

We live in NW Oregon and have a 90' x 30' garden plot that we set up
last spring. It's split into several long raised beds with ~1.5' paths
in between. No boards or anything, just long mounds of soil with paths
in between.

The weeds are a real problem this spring. We tried planting a cover
crop (clover) last fall but it didn't grow that well. We now have a
heavy covering of weeds in both the beds and the paths. I'd like to
create weed free paths for this season (we'll weed and till the beds
when the weather dries up a bit, but I don't want to till the paths),
and also develop a plan for keeping the weeds from coming back in full
force next spring.

My plan for the beds is to use a heavy covering of leaves over all of
them next fall, which will keep the weeds down and will give us
something to till into the soil next spring. For the paths, I'm
currently thinking of weeding, covering with weed barrier cloth, and
then covering with a couple inches of wood chips. I think this idea is
pretty good, but I am concerned about: 1) tilling right next to the weed
barrier cloth, 2) the mess it might make as soil from the beds gets
mixed with the chips, and 3) what a pain it will be to clean up the
chips if we decide to reconfigure the garden.

So, after this long-winded explanantion...can anyone give advice about
using wood chips this way?

Thanks,
Dylan



Skip the barrier cloth, that stuff will at some point sooner or later just
turn out to be in the way. If the between-paths are hemmed in by the
raised beds, you should be able to load on the woodshavings four or six
inches. This'll last for years & years (without nitrogen to assist break
down, a thick path of woodshavings is very long-lasting yet softly
woodland-like to walk on, never apt to get weedy because it's not soil, &
never muddy). And if the arrangement does ever need to be changed, the
shavings need only be mixed into soil to then become compost. MAYBE every
five years it'd be necessary to redo the woodshavings paths since worms
will be working on it from the bottom, but probably only need periodic
scrape off the surface which gets soil spillage mixed in it over time, use
the scrapings for compost, & refresh the top of the pathways -- or just
restore the surface after it compacts down over time. This type of path is
used in one our local swamp parks, & appears to be low-maintenance,
long-lasting, & weed-free even with dense wildwoods seeding left & right.

-paghat the ratgirl

--
"Of what are you afraid, my child?" inquired the kindly teacher.
"Oh, sir! The flowers, they are wild," replied the timid creature.
-from Peter Newell's "Wild Flowers"
See the Garden of Paghat the Ratgirl: http://www.paghat.com/
  #4   Report Post  
Old 28-03-2003, 09:32 PM
Dr. Rev. Chuck, M.D. P.A.
 
Posts: n/a
Default wood chips between raised beds?

Dylan Keon wrote:

Hi all,

We live in NW Oregon and have a 90' x 30' garden plot that we set up
last spring. It's split into several long raised beds with ~1.5' paths
in between. No boards or anything, just long mounds of soil with paths
in between.


Why not just plant lawn grass, with a stepping stone path? Mow every
couple of weeks to keep it looking neat, 30 second job for each row.

You'd of course probably have to move the beds, unless you can find an
18" deck mower.
  #5   Report Post  
Old 28-03-2003, 09:44 PM
SugarChile
 
Posts: n/a
Default wood chips between raised beds?

Instead of the landscape fabric, use newspaper. Laid down in overlapping
layers of 4-6 sheets, it works very well as a weed barrier. It won't
create a problem with the tiller.

I use bark mulch on my perennial beds, and add a few inches each spring to
top it up. On my vegetable beds, I use a thick straw mulch (not hay, too
many weed seeds), with a newspaper base under the straw paths. It looks
very neat, IMO. The garden is practically weed-free, with little effort.

Cheers,
Sue

Zone 6, Southcentral PA


"Dylan Keon" wrote in message
...
Hi all,

We live in NW Oregon and have a 90' x 30' garden plot that we set up
last spring. It's split into several long raised beds with ~1.5' paths
in between. No boards or anything, just long mounds of soil with paths
in between.

The weeds are a real problem this spring. We tried planting a cover
crop (clover) last fall but it didn't grow that well. We now have a
heavy covering of weeds in both the beds and the paths. I'd like to
create weed free paths for this season (we'll weed and till the beds
when the weather dries up a bit, but I don't want to till the paths),
and also develop a plan for keeping the weeds from coming back in full
force next spring.

My plan for the beds is to use a heavy covering of leaves over all of
them next fall, which will keep the weeds down and will give us
something to till into the soil next spring. For the paths, I'm
currently thinking of weeding, covering with weed barrier cloth, and
then covering with a couple inches of wood chips. I think this idea is
pretty good, but I am concerned about: 1) tilling right next to the weed
barrier cloth, 2) the mess it might make as soil from the beds gets
mixed with the chips, and 3) what a pain it will be to clean up the
chips if we decide to reconfigure the garden.

So, after this long-winded explanantion...can anyone give advice about
using wood chips this way?

Thanks,
Dylan






  #6   Report Post  
Old 28-03-2003, 10:44 PM
Dianna Visek
 
Posts: n/a
Default wood chips between raised beds?

I'd skip the barrier cloth. Any weed that starts up in the chips will
get its roots entangled in the cloth and be a royal pain to get out.
Newspaper is a much better idea, and is what we do between our raised
beds.

Regards, Dianna
_______________________________________________
To reply, please remove "fluff" from my address.
  #7   Report Post  
Old 28-03-2003, 11:08 PM
Beecrofter
 
Posts: n/a
Default wood chips between raised beds?

I compost in the pathways and cover the compost with chips. The
following spring I till the paths and sift the finished compost onto
the beds. Then I add more chips and things to compost.
  #8   Report Post  
Old 28-03-2003, 11:20 PM
simy1
 
Posts: n/a
Default wood chips between raised beds?

Dylan Keon wrote in message ...

pretty good, but I am concerned about: 1) tilling right next to the weed
barrier cloth, 2) the mess it might make as soil from the beds gets
mixed with the chips, and 3) what a pain it will be to clean up the
chips if we decide to reconfigure the garden.

So, after this long-winded explanantion...can anyone give advice about
using wood chips this way?

Thanks,
Dylan


Here is my opinion. Woodchips with plastic under is OK, but as they
degrade they will host weeds. I hoe the paths a few times a year. If
you are looking for a solution that will give you no problems, think
hard about a final configuration, edge the beds with something that
goes underground (say, cinder blocks), line the paths with plastic,
and cover with gravel.
  #9   Report Post  
Old 29-03-2003, 12:44 AM
Janet Baraclough
 
Posts: n/a
Default wood chips between raised beds?

The message
from Dylan Keon contains these words:
For the paths, I'm
currently thinking of weeding, covering with weed barrier cloth, and
then covering with a couple inches of wood chips.


You won't need the barrier cloth under the paths; you might want to
lay flattened card packing boxes under the chips, which will smother all
the weeds to death before they disintegrate into the soil.

Years ago we had a large amount of woodchips to disperse, so I laid
them 4 " deep between our raised vegetable beds as a temporary path.(I
didn't need the card underlay as it was clean weedfree soil). Six years
later the "temporary" paths were still good; a very few weeds were
starting to appear but could easily be tweaked out by hand. Even in a
very wet climate the paths stay clean and pleasant to walk on.

Janet.



  #10   Report Post  
Old 29-03-2003, 12:44 AM
Dylan Keon
 
Posts: n/a
Default wood chips between raised beds?

Dylan Keon wrote:

So, after this long-winded explanantion...can anyone give advice about
using wood chips this way?


Hey, thanks to all of you for offering some great ideas. Instead of
replying to each person I thought I'd just post at the same level. I
think I'll give the newspapers and several inches of wood chips (or bark
shavings) a try. I like the idea of composting some of the top layer
each season.

Thanks again,
Dylan



  #11   Report Post  
Old 29-03-2003, 03:20 PM
[email protected]
 
Posts: n/a
Default wood chips between raised beds?

1. tilling brings weed seeds up to the top where they germinate and go to town.
tilling chops up worms. unless your soil is really rock hard clay, dont till. raise
the beds with wood or block and put in compost or good dirt and go from there. OR,
dig a hole, amend and plant. better for food plants is a bag of sheep manure, cut
drainage holes in the bottom, and X or two on top and stick the plant in. use drip
irrigation.
2. if you must remove weeds, cut them down to ground with a hoe and do it before
they go to seed. dont pull them as that brings weed seeds up to the top. the
rotting roots will provide food for worms and other good critters in the soil.
3. use newspapers to smother weeds. cheap, biodegradable and IT WORKS. put marsh!
hay over the newspapers. Start by getting the hay in fall to use as winter cover
over tender plants. in spring it goes down over the walks. in fall it is breaking
down and goes into the beds as mulch and is left there under plastic to rot down into
organic amendments. Soon you will be able to push your hand down into the soil in
the raised beds.
Ingrid


Dylan Keon wrote:
My plan for the beds is to use a heavy covering of leaves over all of
them next fall, which will keep the weeds down and will give us
something to till into the soil next spring. For the paths, I'm
currently thinking of weeding, covering with weed barrier cloth, and
then covering with a couple inches of wood chips.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
List Manager: Puregold Goldfish List
http://puregold.aquaria.net/
www.drsolo.com
Solve the problem, dont waste energy finding who's to blame
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Unfortunately, I receive no money, gifts, discounts or other
compensation for all the damn work I do, nor for any of the
endorsements or recommendations I make.


Reply
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules

Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Raised beds - really raised asd Edible Gardening 0 11-02-2011 03:00 AM
Raised beds - really raised Cipher[_2_] Edible Gardening 7 15-12-2010 11:48 PM
Why are raised beds raised? Chris[_3_] United Kingdom 6 27-01-2009 09:15 PM
Wood for raised beds / pressure treated ok? Brs36 Gardening 3 04-04-2003 09:20 PM
wood chips between raised beds? Dylan Keon Gardening 10 29-03-2003 03:20 PM


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 08:06 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright 2004-2020 GardenBanter.co.uk.
The comments are property of their posters.
 

About Us

"It's about Gardening"

 

Copyright © 2017