Growing Medium

I’m revamping my patio, I’m putting in two retaining walls the idea been to make a large raised bed around most of the patio (see image.
I’m wondering what sort of growing medium I should use: screened soil, multi -purpose compost, a mixture of both ?
I appreciate that I’ May have to add some sort of feed: growmore , fish-blood and bone meal
Any advice.
Hopefully my job will be finished by Tuesday 

Kevin




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Posts

  • Allotment BoyAllotment Boy North London Posts: 1,964
    You will want a bulk bag or a loose load of screened topsoil for that. You will be surprised how much those beds will take so unless you have a lot of spare soil from other areas or digging out the footings you will have to buy in. Small bags will cost a fortune.
    AB Still learning

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 26,002
    Agree totally with @Allotment Boy and you may need more than one bulk bag.
    It doesn't go far.
    It also depends on what you plan to grow in those beds. You could add well rotted manure, and any spent compost you have from pots etc, if you have them, but the level of the soil will also drop from initially filling it, so if you can get  that filled before winter, it gives it a chance to do that, and you can then top it up in spring before planting.  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Leicestershire, UKPosts: 7,985
    I'm worried about those pergola posts in the middle which will rot once they are buried in the soil.
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 26,002
    Good point @BobTheGardener. I hadn't really noticed that  :/
    Properly treated wood will last a good while though, before needing to be replaced. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Leicestershire, UKPosts: 7,985
    Yeah @Fairygirl they look nice and thick too, so should last a while before they go.  It might be worth wrapping them in a couple of layers of black plastic, similar to lining the inside of wooden planters?

    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 26,002
    That's an idea. Or a 'collar' of concrete. Easy enough to do with  bit of timber shuttering and those ready to go bags you can get now. 
    I have to confess I resort to those, because mixing concrete is getting more difficult as my aging bones and muscles are only too aware.  :D
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • hartk10hartk10 Posts: 7
    edited 12 October
    Yes some good ideas and observations there, I hadn’t actually thought about the posts either. Yes they are pretty strong but black plastic seems a good idea Another thought crossed my mind.

     My garden is in a particularly stony area, the stones coming in all shapes and sizes so I’m assuming it will be ok to use those as a filler but what about styrofoam, mineral bottles, milk containers, old flower pots as fillers. I live next to a school and there certainly would be no difficulty getting a supply of milk containers, leaving about .75 meter for soil. Yes/No and topping up as required ?

     If I may push the boat out a little bit more. The bed is facing south/west in an area shaded by large mature trees, on the top of a hill. What would you suggest for all year interest
  • bullfinchbullfinch Posts: 196
    Hi @hartk10 I would definitely put some spring bulbs in, like tete-a-tete daffodils and crocus. Out of interest, how wide is the planting area? An aunt of mine used to grow the double flowered busy lizzies in a very similar bed, they always looked lovely, tho of course both those ideas are only seasonal not all year interest.
  • hartk10hartk10 Posts: 7
    Bullfinch. About 35 cm
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 55,657
    First you need to decide what you're going to grow ... then you'll have a better idea of how much soil depth you need.
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







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