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One Room Challenge - Week 4


Our progress so far. The four raised beds are built and the walkway is being carved out

The weather in the Midwest has finally decided to cooperate and we were able to make some progress this week! Let’s take a look at where we started:

Last years 8ftx3ft original beds

We started last year with 2, 8ft by 3ish ft garden beds. We used one bed for veggies and one bed for cut flowers and herbs. And they worked out really great. But functionally, aesthetically and to be in accordance with the square foot gardening method, we decided we want to make 4, 4ft by 4ft (internally) beds that would have trellis arches and a stone walkway between them.

So this weekend, we got to building. We started with the wood we already had and AJ did a LOT of math to make sure inside the beds we would get 16 perfectly even square foot squares. And he succeeded.


In last years boxes, we used wood scraps to create faux brackets on the inside corners to make sure they wouldn’t shift. This year, because these will be around for MANY years, we used metal corner brackets which you can see here.

The metal corner brackets and metal wood ties we're using to keep the boxes from shifting

And because we reused so much of the wood we already had, there were some spots where AJ had to tie two pieces together which he did with metal ties. We got pretty fortunate that so much of the wood we already had was useable for this project, which was really important to us. Between the cost of lumbar and trying to limit waste, we wanted to make sure we could reuse as much as possible. And we reused everything aside for a few scraps…and we actually have plans for those scraps! So we will have reused all the wood. We did actually have to buy a little bit more and if you look closely, you can see we are about 3 feet short. Whomp whomp. That’s ok. We’ll get that finished up this week.


The other snag that kept us from getting the top trim and lattice also complete this week was needing to dig out a tree stump. The two beds in the below photo that are closest would have been built right on top of the remaining roots from a tree we cut down a few years ago. We wanted to make sure the beds would be as level as possible, so AJ spent a good chunk of time on Sunday digging out the roots that were still remaining so the beds would be as level as possible. That random huge hole in the foreground of the photo? Yea, that's where the stump was.

Almost done for the week! We had a hiccup and had to dig out a tree stump before finishing the last two boxes

We won’t have an update next week because we’ll be on vacation taking a MUCeded rest, but by the time we get back, the weather should be good more often than not so we’ll really be able to crank things out. Next up is the pretty parts of the beds….the top trim work, lattice squares, stone steps and mulch!

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Welcome to my corner of the internet, where I'm (real time) navigating a lifestyle change after a pretty traumatic 2020. Stay a while and watch the Real Life Schmidt unfold and learn a little bit more about me, my husband and our life in small town Wisconsin. So happy you're here!

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