Tips for Building a Concrete Planter Box for Your Garden Landscape
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The addition of a planter box or raised bed container in your garden can add beauty, definition and additional planting opportunities to your landscape, especially in those areas where you'd like to do some gardening but are faced with soil or landscape challenges. Adding a concrete block planter box can be an easy DIY garden project, but there are a few things to consider before forging ahead. Here is a Q&A which will help you with your container gardening project:
Where should I place my planter box?
This is by far the most important item to consider. Determining what will be planted in your raised bed planter box. Will the plants need full sun, partial sun or shade? Choose a location that can meet the needs of your plants. Also consider a spot close to water or, if available, place an existing drip irrigation line through the bottom of the box for automatic watering.
How should I construct the planter box?
Constructing the planter box will start with your location and size. Most planter boxes that are built on flat, level ground are easier to build. If your site is on a hill, then you’re going to have to consider building a terraced planter box from multiple small boxes. A terraced planter box, when done correctly, can be attractive and spacious (check your local building department for maximum wall heights).
What type of material should I backfill my Planter Box with?
Start by placing clean pebbles/rocks or broken planter pots on the bottom of your planter to promote drainage. A good quality organic top soil, purchased from you local landscape yard will help grow large vegetables or beautiful flowers. Fill the planter box almost to the top rim with the top soil, keeping it about 1-2 inches below the rim of the planter box. This will prevent soil from spilling over the top when watering.
What if I have a pest problem, how can I prevent the pests from destroying my work?
If you have gophers or moles, install a wire mesh screen such as chicken wire, on the bottom of the box. this will help keep those pesky critters out. But if your problem is more on the flying side, use a piece of PVC piping and stretch it in a semi circle from one side to the other, to create a frame for bird netting.
What retaining wall block should I use?
Raised bed planter boxes can be constructed using concrete retaining wall blocks, which come in a variety of colors and faces. First, establish the height of your planter box, then look at the maximum heights of the block you've selected. This should be the same height or lower. Basalite offers StoneWall II, Bayfield Series or Artisan Series retaining wall blocks, any of which will accommodate a 2 -3 ft. tall planter box.
Basalite planter boxes are featured on HGTV "Yard Crashers"! Are you ready to build your own planter box? Click here to check out the Yard Crashers video and get step-by-step instructions!