Hillside Gardening Made Easy!

Hillside Gardening Made Easy - Garden Boxes | One Mile Home Style

This DIY is perfect for those of you who are without the most ideal flat space to build a garden. After 5 years of living in our home, we finally got our garden started! Due to our backyard being one giant hill, we decided to try building raised garden boxes to make the best use of the space (and still leave plenty of hillside available for sledding in the winter). They may not be the prettiest garden boxes, but they are doing their job just fine, and maybe in the future, if these do well, we will upgrade them with more permanent materials.

Hillside Garden Boxes - Raised bed gardening on a hill

This view makes the backyard not look very big, but trust me, it is not small, and it is all downhill. We are starting with just these two (tomatoes and potatoes), with the plan of adding a couple more next year, and gradually work our way down the hill. (Pretend you don't see that pile of dirt mud there, we have had a crazy amount of rain lately and the entire yard is one mushy, muddy mess, so we are not moving it until things dry out a bit.) The idea was to build the raised beds into the hillside leaving more than enough room for mowing and moving around between the boxes. They are 4 feet by 4 feet, with 6 feet between the boxes, so they are good sized, but I can still easily reach into the middle without needing to climb into the box itself.

Hillside Garden Boxes - Raised bed gardening on a hill

The construction is very simple; 3- 1x12 common boards that are 8 feet long, and scrap pieces of 2x4 to use as bracing in the corners and the front center. Each 8 foot board was cut in half and one of those 4 foot pieces was ripped lengthwise on the diagonal. 

Depending on your yard, you may need more or less of the 1x12 boards. For our hill, there was almost exactly 1 foot of elevation change from the front of the box to the back (told you it was a big hill!), so using two 1x12 boards on the front worked out perfectly.Then we used the diagonally cut pieces on the sides so that we didn't have to cut into the hill further, or unnecessarily build up the back of the boxes.

Hillside Garden Boxes - Raised bed gardening on a hill

The steepness of this hill is hard to capture in a picture, but I think you can get a good idea from the picture below. So, in the matter of just a couple of hours, we turned our burden of a backyard into a useful garden spot that will continue to grow. Now, to keep all of the plants alive...

Hillside Garden Boxes - Raised bed gardening on a hill

Tell me below, what are your growing in your garden this year?

Comments

  1. Hi there! Well, we don't have to worry about hills in our neck of the woods, but I do have a raised garden. My husband made it out of corrogated metal roofing for the sides, so it is nice and tall! I am growing tomatoes, peppers, corn, cucumbers and sunflowers, just to make it pretty! We have a drought here, so we are doing the best we can with it! Hope your garden does well!

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    1. Oh, I love the idea of using metal roofing for the raised beds! Good luck with your garden this year!!
      Stephanie

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  2. Metal roofing for sides....awesome! We repurposed our shutters and folding doors for the sides of our garden. I stapled tarp on the inside to keep the soil and water INside. We have critters that burrow underneath, so we put chicken wire in the bottom so they couldn't burrow INTO the bed. We found out that our raised beds weren't high enough to keep high hoppin' bunnies OUT of the garden; therefore, we added more chicken wire to the sides of the raised beds. In the past, I watered with a garden hose. This year, I put our rain collectors beside each bed...and use a mini pump to water the garden beds. We have tomatoes, two variety of cucumbers, a variety of lettuce, kale, spinach, two types of beets, turnips, carrots, parsnips, radish (red and white), three varieties of onions and various herbs. We have zucchini planted in the garden beds AND in the yard. I've always thought the leaves and flowers of the zucchinis were so pretty. Next year, I'll just keep the zucchini planted outside the garden beds. The critters won't bother them. We tried the potatoes in straw fencing towers last year and chose to forego them this year.
    We left enough walking space between the beds for our lawn mower. Now, I plan on putting some type of walking path without the mowing. Each year we learn something new to improve our garden. Congrats to all who keep learning how to garden and what works best for you.

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