Rural Living

Our Vegetable Garden 2012.



Constructing a Compost Frame.


Probably like most gardeners we can never produce enough compost, so I decided I needed another container for compost. I looked at a number of alternatives, but decided in the end to construct my own. I had been given a number of lengths of used decking and thought this would not rot, and would give me a strong composting container. I cut a number of lengths 40" long, and cut notches out at each end, so the timber lengths would slot into each other forming a square bin. It is now constructed and the height can be altered as it is filled or emptied by adding or removing individual lengths of timber, cost zero. Please see the pictures.




Constructing a Grow Box.

One of the spring and summer greenhouse chores is maintaining a watering regime that meets the constantly changing demands of our tomatoe, cucumber, and pepper plants. A local gardener John Jones last year introduced me to his homemade grow boxes. The quality of his greenhouse crops were superb, and he is convinced that his grow box method of growing is the main contributor to his success. The use of the grow box also means that the chore of watering only needs to be undertaken every week or so, and the plants also receive a constant amount of water. These grow boxes can be purchased from and there is also an informative video on the grow box. John had designed some of his own, and I was keen to make some of my own. I purchased six fish boxes from a local fish wholesaler at £1 each, plastic bags from easi grow at 50p each, and some 41/2" plastic soil pipe not required by a friend. I have taken some pictures of the method I have used to construct my boxes for the coming year at a cost of £1-50p for each grow box.

Using the 41/2" plastic pipe as a template mark three circles on the lid of the box. When the pipes are fitted they will need to be a tight fit so ensure this is taken into account when marking out. Mark out two smaller holes in the corners, these will be used for filling the boxes with water. I used a drill bit to cut through the edge of the circle then used a hacksaw blade to cut around the marked line.






Once the holes have been cut out, cut the piping down to fit the box so that the pipe lies flush with the top of the box and the bottom of the box. With the boxes I had purchased the pipes were cut to 71/2" lengths. Cut out four slots in the bottom of the pipes so that water can enter the inside of the pipes when the plants have been planted.





Fit the pipes into the lid until they are flush with the top of the lid. The base of the boxes had vent holes in the corners so I filled these with mastic before placing the plastic bags inside. The lid is then fitted and the job is complete and awaiting the plants in the Spring











Our Kitchen Garden in January

Kitchen Garden in January