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I bought Mel Bartholomew's book Square Foot Gardening, and it completely changed the way I am doing my Garden for 2011. It uses the method of building 4 by 4 foot raised planter beds and you divide the beds into 1 by 1 "square foot sections". This allows you to garden without ever having to walk on and compact your soil. It also makes for easy weeding and harvesting. I definitely recommend this book for someone that wants to try gardening, but doesn't want a big commitment. You can start with just one 4 by 4 foot bed.
Below are pics of my new gardening area based on the Square Foot Gardening technique. I have a total of six beds: 3 - 4X4 beds, and 3 - 4X8 beds. I built my beds out of 2X6 natural cedar. I outlined the entire area by reusing my concrete pavers from last years garden The area covers about 24 feet by 21 feet. The walkways between the beds are about 3 feet wide and are covered in pine straw which is nice and soft on the knees. I filled them using the old soil from last years garden and a mix I got from Mel's book. My mix was one half dirt from last year's bed, one half quality dirt/compost from a local nursery, vermiculite, lime, and 13-13-13 fertilizer. I made my grids 2x2 feet instead of the standard 1x1 feet. That saved a lot of time, and 1x1 grids just seemed too small for me. I built the grids using mason string and deck screws screwed in the top of the beds.