What can I build my grids out of?
Ray_Scheel(z8b/SS31 E. TX)January 1, 2013
Anything you want! Some ideas:
- String/cord/rope (laid across, or fasted to metal eyes screwed or drilled into the walls of a raised bed) -synthetic won't rot away, but cotton or jute or hemp ropes will, sooner or later.
- Plastic - vinyl blinds make great grid markers when the intersections are hole-punched and fastened with office-supply brads. This also makes a grid that is easy to fold up (accordian-style) and store during dormant months. One blind would provide you with a huge supply of grid material! -home-supply stores sell white plastic molding (looks like wood), including some thin strips that can easily be cut to lengths for a square foot grid.
- Wood -Home-supply stores also sell actual woooden molding, white or unpainted, which can be laid down and/or woven together for grids. Unpainted will rot quickly; painted will probably rot slowly. -many who have chosen to use 3'-wide beds love yardsticks for cheap grid material! Sawing grooves partway through at 1' intervals makes them fastenable to the intersecting yardsticks beneath/above them.
- Rebar -Thin rebar welded or woven together makes a semi-permenent grid. (remember that rebar will rust over time without a sealant or paint, and may rust even with these things)
- Carpet squares -Mel recommended using upside-down carpet as mulch in his book. Some have cut 12" squares, cut spacing holes for the recommended plantings, and simply lay these down as mulch and grid markers and planting guides combined.
- Nothing -Experienced intensive gardeners can often do without building physical grids: Some eyeball the spacing Some use markers along the beds' sides and then draw (mental or actual) lines in the soil to connect them for spacing Some use a single 12" frame laid in the dirt to indicate the spacing while planting is being done.
- Weed fabric (not the black plastic which is impermeable, but the fabric/cloth type) on top of the bed and spray paint the grid lines with white paint, then use scissors to cut slits where each plant was planted.