There are many different methods to making raised beds. The idea is always the same but the materials vary. There are lots of differing opinions on the best material. Personally, since many materials such as wood do not hold up well, we chose to go with concrete. The only big drawback is that the concrete blocks are hard on the back. They are heavy and cumbersome but concrete is so durable that I should not find myself redoing this work anytime soon.
We decided to use plain concrete cinder blocks. We bought a pallet of 108 cinder blocks. This was enough to build three raised beds and leave a few over for some benches.
The steps as I remember them was:
- Place block
- Check the level
- Remove the block
- Move some dirt around
- Replace the block at which point we are really at step one again
Once the beds are built, they need to be filled with dirt. This requires a LOT of dirt. A few bags from the garden store will not be enough. And bagged dirt usually has the highest cost per pound. The easiest and most affordable solution is to bring in a bulk purchase in a truck. From there the process is to just move the dirt in with the wheelbarrow and a shovel. We filled these beds with 2 cubic yards of garden soil from a local landscaping company.