The full crate is the original Little Veggie Patch Co product and still one of our favourites. These crates are retired from their service in Victoria's apple industry and, after we reinforce and reinvigorate them, they are ready for a second life as a raised garden bed. Measuring 1.2m wide x 1.2m long x 60cm high, the crates are easy to tend, have excellent drainage, catch more sunlight, and allow you to import quality soil.
Crates delivered as a DIY Pack will contain all of the necessary components for a ready to plant garden, but customers get an enhanced ownership and experience by filling the crate themselves. It's often the first step in someone's gardening experience and we've worked hard to make it as easy as possible by providing everything in the exact quantities required. Every ingredient is pH balanced and organic, so once it is assembled, you can plant immediately.
DIY Full Crate Ingredients:
1 x Full Crate
1 x Bale of organic sugarcane mulch
1 x Bag of organic fertiliser
9 x Bags of organic compost
1 x Sachet organic GeoSoil rock minerals
1 x Bag of organic worm castings
1 x Bag of organic potting mix
Location- Place the crate in a level position that it will catch as much light as possible. Edible plants love light, and will benefit from whatever you can grab. Ideally, this would be a position with a northerly aspect. However, don't be fussed if you don't have the perfect location, plenty of gardens still thrive in a variety of conditions.
Once the location is settled, break apart the bale of sugarcane mulch and spread it across the base of the crate. Then, sprinkle the entire bag of fertiliser onto the mulch. As the mulch and fertiliser break down, they will slowly release a steady source of nutrients to the garden bed.
Next, empty all nine bags of compost into the garden bed and level the soil. This makes up the bulk of the growing medium and is specially balanced for edible plants. Mature compost is pH neutral and contains all vital nutrients and trace elements that plants require to be healthy and productive.
Activate the soil by adding a sachet of GeoSoil rock minerals (additional micro nutrients) and the entire bag of worm castings (life). If you haven't heard, we're big fans of worm castings- not only because they smell like dark chocolate (go ahead, breath deeply), but most importantly because they contain thousands of worm eggs, ready to colonise the garden bed.
In our experience, it is simply not enough to have nutrient rich soil, you need it to be alive. A healthy biota of living organisms and bacterium greatly enhances soil by assisting with the decomposition of organic material and conditioning nutrients so that they can be better accessed by plants. This means that the garden will remain productive for many years to come.
The final step to assembling the DIY Full Crate is to top it off with a bag of premium, organic potting mix. Although the many layers of compost below will be the engine for growth, we find that seeds and seedlings will initially do better in potting mix. It is perfectly balanced and gentle on young plants. As the garden grows, however, their roots will then tap into the vast nutrient reserves below.
That's it. As easy as packaged cake mix and a whole lot healthier. The garden is ready to plant!
To take it a step further, check out our articles on Planting Seeds and Planting Seedlings.