Saturday, November 21, 2009

An Earth Box?

The relationship in our house with salads is one of a sort of love/hate.  We LOVE salads, but I can not stand paying a small fortune for lettuce!!  Even BOGO ends up making it $2 or more for a bag of salad that lasts one meal.  Our solution...a small earth box in the front yard.

"What is an earth box," you ask?  It's a fancy name for a raised bed that will help me stay out of trouble with the homeowner's association :)

We built ours Memorial Day weekend.  It was a fun Family Project.  The hubbie did most of the work, but for those of you that just can't wait on the hubbie, it was so easy I could have done it myself.   
First, plan out where you are going to put it.  That will dictate the shape.  Since ours was on the corner of the sidewalk, we use an L shape.  It helps to make a little sketch before hand so you write measurements down.

Use 2' x 10" pressure treated pine and galvanized screws (they don't rust here at the beach).

Cut the wood to the measurements you need and build your box.  You may need to predrill the holes for your screws.  Just use a drill bit slightly smaller than the diameter of the screw.

You don't have to paint it.  We brought a chip from a broken terra cotta pot to Home Depot and had them match it.  It helped add some color to our front yard.

We filled ours with dirt from the compost bin, but some black cow from your local home improvement store will work just as well.  Then, just like we did with the peas, mix some organic fertilizer into the top layer of the soil.

Plant whatever you would like in it.  We planted lettuce, and we now have a never ending supply!!!  You can buy packages of seeds that are a garden mix.  We used Gurney's lettuce mix and spinach seeds.  It's not too late in NE Florida to plant lettuce and spinach.   Just sprinkle the seeds onto the soil and sprinkle more soil over the seeds (about a 1/2").  In 4-5 days you will start seeing little seedlings pop up.  I will get some pics of what our "Earth Box" looks like now and post them.  It has filled in beautifully, and really does look pretty

When you harvest the lettuce, just cut the leaves off at the base and more leaves will grow on the same plant...hence, the "never ending" supply.  I've been clipping mine when they're pretty young just like the spring greens mix you buy at the grocery store.  The taste is amazing.  I was really surprised how much flavor lettuce loses in those bags!!!

1 comment:

  1. I was reading your post and just wanted to see if you’ve heard of the Grow Box? I've tried it and I've had so much success. I had Spanish Onions, Cucumbers, Butternut Squash and Beets this past summer! It's actually a bit better and a whole lot less expensive! They hold about a gallon and a half more water. Check it out at
    Happy Gardening!