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The thing I researched most in my 12 months trying to get back to Thailand was “raised beds gardening! No experience with it at all but like the idea of raised up and contained plus easy to work with.

Galvanized steel may be in the future but to start I just bought 3 concrete rings....they seem to use them for a lot of things here and cheap as borscht! Anyone out there with experience or perhaps some advice...happy to hear from you😀
 

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Yes that looks great....And accomplishes all the things container gardening should except for height! My wife was hit by a drunk driver two years ago and broke her back so I wanted to raise thing

My early working life was as a horticulturist before going into the building trades. Don't put wood in the bottom you might just get a bacterial disease called phytophera introduced through the breakd

photos please.    would like to show to the mrs .    anyone else doing such also welcome to post some photos. we have used this method (in my photo)  ,   but the rings could be another method

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1 minute ago, chilly07 said:

Concrete rings work well. Old tires not so we'll. Think there is something in/on the tire that kills plants

Good to know 

The concrete rings are heavy and you pretty well determine where they’re going and that’s it!

you can roll them around initially  to get them where you want!

I will fill the lower half with leaves and pieces of wood etc that is cheap and will break down in a year or so and then the rest with good soil from under some of our big old trees and mix in a bag of cow poop to boot! Also pick up a bag of earthworms from garden centre and split it among the first three rings being delivered....they really help to condition the soil etc and once they’re established they live on.

There will be some weed seeds but easy to pick out when they’re at waist level

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Just now, Kanada said:

Good to know 

The concrete rings are heavy and you pretty well determine where they’re going and that’s it!

you can roll them around initially  to get them where you want!

I will fill the lower half with leaves and pieces of wood etc that is cheap and will break down in a year or so and then the rest with good soil from under some of our big old trees and mix in a bag of cow poop to boot! Also pick up a bag of earthworms from garden centre and split it among the first three rings being delivered....they really help to condition the soil etc and once they’re established they live on.

There will be some weed seeds but easy to pick out when they’re at waist level

I use concrete rings for growing veg, have done now for more than 4 years.

Put some dried leaves in the bottom, fill about 80  with soil, put in some cow manure, mix it in, no need to buy worms, they will soon find your rings, and  enjoy dining on the manure.

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I have used concrete rings, raised beds propped up by bricks and just ones with 45 degree soil slopes. Unconfined beds do tend to erode in heavy rain,  and surprisingly a 2 brick high wall once got pushed over by the soil when it was waterlogged.

 

Main reason for raised beds is drainage, and also helps slow down invasive weeds.  Concrete rings - if exposed to a lot of sun do get hot, which may affect some plant roots - carrots didn't like it.

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2 minutes ago, GreasyFingers said:

We have a couple that have lime trees in them and produce good fruit. Also grow mint. But remember they need to be watered regularly in dry season.

One of our rings is for mint and other cooking plants etc...save me from running into town before dinner!!

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My wife has built two raised beds that are temporary, both made from 6 inch bamboo laid one on top of the other, in a square and then infilled with dirt. It's very effective and saves messing around with concrete etc.

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10 minutes ago, rickudon said:

I have used concrete rings, raised beds propped up by bricks and just ones with 45 degree soil slopes. Unconfined beds do tend to erode in heavy rain,  and surprisingly a 2 brick high wall once got pushed over by the soil when it was waterlogged.

 

Main reason for raised beds is drainage, and also helps slow down invasive weeds.  Concrete rings - if exposed to a lot of sun do get hot, which may affect some plant roots - carrots didn't like it.

Thanks for that....good point 

I’m going to paint mine white using a good primer to resist the heat a bit

Its a good feature of the galvanized steel but they are really expensive by comparison

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Roll those concrete rings VERY cautiously, or not at all. I have had a brand new one collapse on me while rolling it into place. They're not made for that. 

 

Have had success moving them (on a hard surface) by prying the bottom up with a hoe, then slip a pipe or dowel under it. Roll it along on several dowels, moving each dowel to the front as it comes out the back. You can even turn if you angle each successive dowel. You can use PVC pipe if you slip a small one into a bigger size. One pipe will be crushed, especially if the ring is already full of soil. 

 

We are growing limes and a few herbs successfully for quite a few years. 

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1 hour ago, rickudon said:

I have used concrete rings, raised beds propped up by bricks and just ones with 45 degree soil slopes. Unconfined beds do tend to erode in heavy rain,  and surprisingly a 2 brick high wall once got pushed over by the soil when it was waterlogged.

 

Main reason for raised beds is drainage, and also helps slow down invasive weeds.  Concrete rings - if exposed to a lot of sun do get hot, which may affect some plant roots - carrots didn't like it.


Paint them white. The type that is for roof, keeps temp low. 

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22 minutes ago, LawrenceN said:

Roll those concrete rings VERY cautiously, or not at all. I have had a brand new one collapse on me while rolling it into place. They're not made for that. 

 

Have had success moving them (on a hard surface) by prying the bottom up with a hoe, then slip a pipe or dowel under it. Roll it along on several dowels, moving each dowel to the front as it comes out the back. You can even turn if you angle each successive dowel. You can use PVC pipe if you slip a small one into a bigger size. One pipe will be crushed, especially if the ring is already full of soil. 

 

We are growing limes and a few herbs successfully for quite a few years. 

I’m worried about rolling them too but I was at the factory where they make them and noticed they were rolling them 

I would never attempt to move one full of dirt...is it full ones you’re referring to moving them on rollers?

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6 minutes ago, jvs said:

We have been using rings for years,works great.We make our own compost also

and we do not use any chemicals.We now have a cement bottom in them,water can still seep out but on hot dry days it seems to keep the moisture in a lot better.

Also old bathtubs work very well.

more rings.jpg

rings.jpg

Looks great but would not like to be doing the grass cutting around all of those curves.

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58 minutes ago, GreasyFingers said:

Looks great but would not like to be doing the grass cutting around all of those curves.

Cutting the grass is not a big deal at all,we use a weed whacker for that only takes a little bit of time.Grass is for the rabbits,the fence is to keep the chickens out and we have full sun for about half the day,after lunch,shade.

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1 hour ago, Tropposurfer said:

My early working life was as a horticulturist before going into the building trades. Don't put wood in the bottom you might just get a bacterial disease called phytophera introduced through the breakdown of the cellulose in the wood (which is bad bad bad for root systems even in veggies and if it develops will work through the ground and kill trees all around).

Break the ground up under the new containers so the drainage is good (if its compacted that's not good) and if there are any weeds there remove by the roots. 

Successive layering of straw, lucerne, home made compost (bagged from nursery is okay too), dry leaves, old veggie cuttings, (no onions of citrus),  old animal poo (bagged treated poo from nursery is good - sheep is best but chicken, cow, or horse is okay but horse has less nutrients), and soil until the beds are totally full. The level will drop as the vegetable material breaks down. Wait for few months before planting in this.

If you can find a way to get regular poo supplies from somewhere (maybe some elephant added too and make a compost bin and stockpile it to age. Collect all your fruit and veggie scraps in a lidded bucket, go and add them to the compost pile (dig a hole and bury to keep pests away - cover with a piece of old carpet helps the composting and encourages compost worms.

Be careful with anything you put into the containers - weed seeds.

Mulch the soil surface with straw but keep away from plant stems. Get a simple pH test kit and once the beds have had a few months to mature and rot turn them over and add soil and compost to raise the bed levels to just below the bed edges (maybe 100-75 mm). pH test the soil and any soil you introduce to the beds. Don't plant in fresh manure as new manure has tons of urea in it and can be very acidic, burn or kill plants. Remember while soils can be reasonable in nutrients you need good microbial activity and worms to really get good results so don't just get a load of soil that has almost zero organic matter. It will have minerals etc in it but without the orgasnic and microbial input the plants can't get at it even when its in solution.

You also have to replenish the organic material is the soils through the growing year, and vary what . you put in the beds a bit. Things like blood and bone meal is great for long term health and nutrient release. Lime for things like peas and beans. I'd also suggest you buy a decent vegetable propagation and care book (specific to your region) to refer to for planting species, times, and care. Good luck, gardening is wonderful.

Wow...great info...Thank You!

 

we are on 4 rai here with lots of big trees that have been here for years dropping leaves and branches etc!

My soil will come from directly below these trees and I have found any and all plants seem to react well to the addition of this soil in their beds!

The cow poop is well aged and dried  when it comes to me in bags so I don’t think it will burn....I’ll only add one bag per ring or even less as the soil I referred to is already really fertile!

The only surprise was loosening up the soil under the ring....with 30”’s of dirt of and 35 degree plus weather I would have thought it would be ok to hold the moisture in!

someone mentioned painting the concrete white and I’d already planned that...for some reason this guys concrete comes out really dark and even a little black from the forms it seems but we buy from him because he delivers and knows where we are😊

Ive done a ton of research during the last year in hotel rooms waiting to come home!

Im used to gardening in the seasons but I’ll get it figured out

Thanks for the information...I’ll save this 

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1 hour ago, jvs said:

We have been using rings for years,works great.We make our own compost also

and we do not use any chemicals.We now have a cement bottom in them,water can still seep out but on hot dry days it seems to keep the moisture in a lot better.

Also old bathtubs work very well.

more rings.jpg

rings.jpg

Could I suggest that you keep the rings about 50cm apart. That way you can run a weed whacker all the way around them.

 

1 hour ago, GreasyFingers said:

Looks great but would not like to be doing the grass cutting around all of those curves.

Weed whackers with nylon cords work very well. Steel blades are not so good.

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1 hour ago, jvs said:

We have been using rings for years,works great.We make our own compost also

and we do not use any chemicals.We now have a cement bottom in them,water can still seep out but on hot dry days it seems to keep the moisture in a lot better.

Also old bathtubs work very well.

more rings.jpg

rings.jpg

Looks great 👍 

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1 minute ago, billd766 said:

Could I suggest that you keep the rings about 50cm apart. That way you can run a weed whacker all the way around them.

 

Weed whackers with nylon cords work very well. Steel blades are not so good.

Good idea!

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1 hour ago, jvs said:

We have been using rings for years,works great.We make our own compost also

and we do not use any chemicals.We now have a cement bottom in them,water can still seep out but on hot dry days it seems to keep the moisture in a lot better.

Also old bathtubs work very well.

more rings.jpg

rings.jpg

Nice garden 🙏🙏🙏

I’m envious...we have a great garden )but need color) I’ve been busy trimming and propping up trees that have slowly leaned over with the weight of fruit or just simply I trimmed and unbalanced branches that weigh a ton when wet with rain!

Slowly getting the the point where we can focus on some color and centre pieces.

We have a big koi pond but wife just built a lily pond...see photo 

It’s raised up because we have a one year old Bangkaew dog that loves the water😃

961501E7-3E89-4F86-B2F6-06A2E6D30C01.jpeg

0DD7323E-B00B-40A1-B6C8-85E7129983C3.jpeg

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26 minutes ago, billd766 said:

Weed whackers with nylon cords work very well. Steel blades are not so good

I know but when you 3 rai it is not easy in wet season. Going around the concrete adds a lot of time and I also have to put up with the wife and FIL planting things wherever they like with no thought of order or design. And weeding a garden is not something they understand.

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One thing I like here is learning gardening all over again and all the little critters that come with it!

Anyone seen one of these....an amazing little guy...rolls into an ironclad ball and can change colors too!!

9442E893-2B49-45DE-A706-C90FFB5C2DB2.jpeg

2162D10B-55FA-4674-B561-312EC498E07A.jpeg

77892DBE-5F28-4B49-9F16-B935FAA229D1.jpeg

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Just read thru all the posts here but didn't see anyone using the system my wife uses. She uses a large locking brick, it has 2 stubs on the topside which prevents the built wall moving and the advantage to this is that they can be made any size or height. She's made about 7 or 8 beds with this system, some a metre square and some are 5x1 metres so great beds, these all have veg in so are 4 or 5 bricks high. Easy as.

Cheers.

 

 

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1 hour ago, GreasyFingers said:

I know but when you 3 rai it is not easy in wet season. Going around the concrete adds a lot of time and I also have to put up with the wife and FIL planting things wherever they like with no thought of order or design. And weeding a garden is not something they understand.

I do understand. I usually start weed whacking about this time of year and carry on until November. I have probably 5 rai to cut and at 76 I only do about an hour in the early morning when it is a bit cooler.

 

Luckily my wife has only 3 concrete rings but a lot of lemon grass and trees I use the nylon on. Even more luck she found a guy who comes once a week and he does in a day what takes me 6 or 7 mornings. 2 of them do my neighbours scrub in about 1  1/2 days.

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14 hours ago, Kanada said:

One of our rings is for mint and other cooking plants etc...save me from running into town before dinner!!

I used organic compost for the first time and everything is irrationally exuberant. Much much better than ever before.

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2 hours ago, elgenon said:

I used organic compost for the first time and everything is irrationally exuberant. Much much better than ever before.

and there’s a little satisfaction to having “made it yourself”.(?) struggling for the right term here but you know what I mean!

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