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What do you have between your raised beds and would you recommend it?

(29 Posts)
TheCountessofFitzdotterel Wed 17-Feb-16 16:40:10

Just that, really.
I don't want too much maintenance so not brick paths that will take a lot of weeding.

I had been thinking grass but we have a big lawnmower so they will need to be extra wide if I go with that.


Kr1stina Wed 17-Feb-16 17:43:34

Weedproof membrane and gravel

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Wed 17-Feb-16 18:52:35

And you like it?

champagnemum1 Wed 17-Feb-16 18:54:21

Same as kr1stina! We did have grass but it used to take as long to cut round the raised beds as it did to cut the whole lawn. We then changed to membrane and bark which looked lovely but after a particularly windy storm the bark was blown away so we now have gravel and it is great 😄

LadyB49 Wed 17-Feb-16 18:56:12

Some flagging and some membrane with wood clippings. No problems with wind or weather.

januarybrown1998 Wed 17-Feb-16 18:59:16

Gravel and lawn elsewhere. Means you can curse slugs harvest bountiful crops in rainy weather without getting your boots too muddy.

What are you planting? Or is it flower beds?
<gardening noobie>

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Wed 17-Feb-16 19:13:57

It's for my veg beds. In my old house I had two dinky little raised beds. New house has huge garden including several big veg patches which I used last year and seemed to spend all my time trying to stop the grass encroaching. So I am going to get some lovely new beds, since having now experienced both I definitely prefer the raised ones!

bigbadbarry Wed 17-Feb-16 19:15:20

Membrane and gravel. I don't love it but it is practical.

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Wed 17-Feb-16 19:17:15

It's a very sheltered position so probably safe from bark blowing away though I think gravel will last longer. Hmm. Slugs not too bad as I have ducks (came with the house). Used to have a lot of trouble with kids playing with my gravel but they're older now.

shovetheholly Thu 18-Feb-16 08:32:39

I have weedproof membrane and chipped wood. The chipped wood comes free from the council so this is far and away the cheapest option for me! No problems with it blowing away - it does, however, need topping up each year.

My beds are in an allotment, though. If they were at home and I had the cash, I'd go for brick paths with some of those lovely old weathered bricks.

My beds are wooden and I think it would be a nightmare getting a lawnmower right to the edge of the path.

DoreenLethal Thu 18-Feb-16 08:35:38

I've had membrane, which the weeds still grow through. I've had bark which turns to compost and feeds the weeds. I've had slate and it is a PITA and not easy to kneel on. SO we now have grass at the allotment and the garden. We have 2 mowers. The mowings get used as a mulch.

I don't use raised beds now I use mounds. But if you love your raised beds then I am sure they will look spiffing. And with ample space for mowing in between your veg garden will look stunning.

shovetheholly Thu 18-Feb-16 08:36:54

(Apologies for momentary thread hijack, Countess) - how deep do you pile your mounds, Doreen? Someone is doing very, very deep ones at my allotment and they look really amazing.

januarybrown1998 Thu 18-Feb-16 09:07:10


That sounds fantastic. Do you get eggs from them too?

So do they actually eat the slugs?

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Thu 18-Feb-16 09:40:25

Here are my lovely duckies. The white one is a boy and the brown one is a girl. They were already past laying when we moved in, but when they pop their clogs I will get younger ones which lay. They are Indian runner ducks which don't really need a pond (though we have a small one) and we feed them but they mostly forage.

januarybrown1998 Thu 18-Feb-16 09:43:35

They are magnificent. I've got duck envy. Are they a bother to look after? Do they scarper often? <sorry another hijack>

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Thu 18-Feb-16 11:36:48

They are the least trouble pets I have ever had. If we leave the garden gate open they don't go through it. They sleep outside in all weathers (when we moved in there was a ruined duck house that they never used) and they poo a bit on paths but not as much as my chickens used to. If we had foxes it would be more trouble because we would have to shut them up at night.

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Thu 18-Feb-16 11:40:09

Shovetheholly - my garden has quite a few brick paths and I find them an awful pita tbh because they get weedy very fast and I hate weeding them. Maybe there is something I should be doing to them to deter weeds. They would look stunning between raised beds though.

Kr1stina Thu 18-Feb-16 12:40:38

Oh these ducks are so cute!

DoreenLethal Thu 18-Feb-16 12:43:32

how deep do you pile your mounds, Doreen?

As deep as I can. I mulch and put as much compost on the top esp of the very clayey soil.

shovetheholly Thu 18-Feb-16 12:47:18

Countess - you are puncturing my dreams of a brick-paved kitchen garden!! grin But good point about the weeding. It's much easier to fall in love with these things when you don't have to get down on your hands and knees with a daisy grubber.

I'm gonna try the Doreen method of deep veggie mounds!!

cooper44 Sat 20-Feb-16 20:44:23

the path/weed issue is all in the preparation - we put in a load of paths just over a year ago. we cut the paths quite deep (maybe 20cm or bit more) put down membrane, did a 10cm layer of hardcore, beaten down with a whacker, then the same of a very fine gravel Breedon Amber Gravel. Again whacked down. It looks fab and not a single weed has come up - although grass cuttings will root on it if left. (Unlike the greenhouse where we forgot to put the membrane in first and lots of weeds come up all the bloody time).
I want to do this gravel in between raised beds when I eventually do a kitchen garden.
But I also love brick paths - I think they'd cost more to lay though.

funnyperson Sun 21-Feb-16 20:42:13

pros and cons of membranes here

caroldecker Sun 21-Feb-16 21:33:15

Can you not lay the brick paths on the membrane to avoid the weeds?

lavendersun Sun 21-Feb-16 21:34:41

Grass here, just over a lawn mower's width, works fine.

OnlyTheStones Sun 21-Feb-16 21:49:30

I have brick paths and they don't need much weeding. There is a layer of weed-proof fabric under each path, then bricks with gravel poured over the top and swept into the gaps between the bricks. I really like them and don't find them high maintenance at all. Apparently you can deter weeds from growing up between the bricks by sprinkling rock salt over the path but I have never needed to try this.

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