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How To Build A Raised Garden Bed With Sleepers – A Crash Course

How To Build A Raised Garden Bed With Sleepers

So, how to build a raised garden bed with sleepers? Sounds a little complicated right? Actually, it can be, I’m not going to lie.

This article will provide you with the basic information you need to know about building your own raised garden bed.

Raised garden beds are a great way to grow food in a small space.

They are a good idea for anyone who lives in an apartment, condo, or house with a small garden.

Raised bed gardens can be built from wood, stone, brick or metal. A raised garden bed is a container filled with soil and arranged in a rectangular shape.

It is designed to be placed on top of sleepers or cinder blocks. This is a simple and affordable method for creating a garden that can be built in any environment.

It’s important to choose the right type of sleeper for your project- solid bricks, bricks with holes, wood slats, boards or railway sleepers.

Depending on the type of sleeper you want, you will need to drill through it with a power drill or saw it with a saw.

A raised garden bed can be as small as one square yard and as large as 8-10 yards by 8-10 yards – its size is entirely up to you!

The most common way to fill the raised garden beds would be by using compost.

Building raised garden beds is the perfect option for anyone who wants to grow food without using up too much space in their garden.

All you need is a few hours, some sleepers or planks of wood, and your own creativity.

How To Build A Raised Garden Bed With Sleepers

Building a raised garden bed is a do-it-yourself project that will cost nothing more than your time and effort. If you haven’t got the skills, hire this project out.

First step is to select the location where the bed will be constructed. There are many different factors that need to be taken into account. They include sunlight, wind exposure, weed control, and irrigation.

Once the site is chosen, you can begin gathering materials. You will need at least four sleepers or wooden boards to construct the frame of your raised garden bed. These should be cut down to size in order to fit together properly.

plant your vegetables
Once the sleepers are in, you can prepare and plant your vegetables 

A second set of wooden boards is needed to create a base for the raised garden bed.

This base must have holes drilled through it so that water drains out as the soil dries.

When the wood has dried completely, sanding can begin on both sides of the boards.

Sanding removes any rough edges or splinters, giving it a smooth finish.

After the wood has been sanded, it’s ready to be stained. Staining helps protect the wood against rot and insects. It also gives the wood an attractive appearance.

Stain colors vary depending on what type of wood you’re using. For example, if you’re building a raised garden bed made from cedar, you can use red stain.

If you’re using pine, you can choose between brown or yellow stains.

Make sure that all pieces of wood used for your raised garden bed are treated before they’re assembled. Treated lumber lasts much longer than untreated lumber.

If you’re going to use pressure-treated lumber, you’ll need to apply two coats of paint. After each coat, sand the surface to remove any excess paint.

Assemble The Garden Bed

Next, you’ll need to assemble the raised garden bed. Begin by placing one sleeper on top of another until the entire frame is complete.

Now comes the fun part. It’s time to start filling the beds with dirt. Start with the bottom layer, which is called the footer. Fill the footer with three inches of gravel.

Continue adding layers of gravel up the side of the bed until the desired height has been reached. When finished, add a final layer of gravel to cover the top of the bed.

Add the plants to your raised garden bed. Add plants like tomatoes, peppers, and cucumbers to keep weeds under control.

To help prevent pests from entering your raised garden bed, place a wire mesh barrier around the perimeter. Once the bed is planted, fill it with potting mix.

This mixture should be kept moist throughout the growing season. Water thoroughly during dry periods, but don’t overdo it.

Watering deeply once every week or 10 days is enough to maintain moisture levels. Use a hose to wet the soil, not the plants themselves.

As mentioned earlier, raised garden beds tend to produce better crops than traditional gardens. Raised beds allow air to circulate freely around the roots of the plants, keeping them healthy and producing high yields.

Raised garden beds provide great benefits for homeowners who live in areas with harsh weather conditions. They’re easy to plant and care for, and require very little maintenance.

bricks and pavers
Bricks and pavers are also good border options

Garden Bed Sleepers – Where To Find Them?

When raised garden beds are arranged according to the sun’s direction, they can help your plants and vegetables grow better.

When you’re selecting and arranging your raised garden bed plants, you should take into account the direction of the sun in relation to where you live.

The best time to plant in a raised bed is when the sun is not shining on it for at least six hours per day. When you want something that gets full sunlight, such as tomatoes or sunflowers, then try planting them in an area close to where the sun shines for most of the day.

Sleepers or wooden boards can be hard to get on occasions. Head down to your local hardware store first and see if they have any in stock. If there is a railway yard close to your property check with them to see if they have sleepers lying around they’re not planning to use.

Scan your local classified sections, check with your local lumber yard. Just ask around. You are only requiring a small number.

Sleepers Or Wooden Boards?

Sleepers, especially old sleepers are preferred but don’t worry if you can’t get them. Wooden boards will be fine.

What size of sleepers should I buy?

It depends on how big your raised bed is going to be. I’ve given a couple of example sizes and here’s more.

For example, if you plan to make a 6 foot by 4 foot raised bed, then you would need two 3×4’s. However, if you’re making a 10 foot by 8 foot raised bed, then four 3x4s would suffice.

If you can’t get sleepers, wooden boards are fine. I used both.

If you do find sleepers, you will need to cut them up. The easiest way to do this is by using a circular saw.

It’s beyond the scope of this article to give you a lesson using a circular saw and the best bet is for you to hire someone to cut them for you.

That’s what I did and it took little time and the cost was minimal.

You might also consider buying a pre-made sleepers kit. They come with all the necessary tools and materials needed to make your own raised bed. A good quality wooden sleeper is made from pine.

How To Build A Raised Garden Bed With Sleepers – Final Thoughts

My final tip? If you are not gifted in putting stuff together hire the job out.

Yes you could attempt to do it yourself but imagine the time and frustration you’ll save.

You handle the important part. And that’s planting the garden after all, this is your passion.

So don’t spend too much time thinking about how to build a raised garden with sleepers if you know you don’t have the skills to install the sleepers.

Again, hire this part out. Trust me, you’ll thank me.

JD Dean

Growing up on a farm gave me and my family some huge advantages. One of them was learning to grow our own food. Apart from acres and acres of crops, we had a magnificent fruit and vegetable garden plus, we canned our own food. I’m hoping to pass on some of this expertise and experience to you.

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