What is so great about cypress. Why is it better than treated pine?
Cypress is natural by-product salvaged from old farm windbreaks, and the most environmentally friendly new timber source we know of. No old growth, no large single-species plantations, and because it’s naturally ground-durable, no chemical treatment. Cypress is a beautiful timber to work with, looks gorgeous, smells lovely, and can last more than 10-15 years even when buried in soil (see footage of a 3.5 year-old VEG bed here).
Treated pines including ACQ and ‘ecowood’ are generally grown in large monocultural plantations which contribute to soil erosion, loss of habitat and biodiversity. They then absorb huge amounts of energy in transportation to treatment plants which dowse them in chemicals (required to kill termites and fungi as pine is not naturally ground-durable) and heat-treat them to reduce warping and shrinkage. If you work with treated pine whenever you make a cut you are advised to paint on more pesticide and fungicide as the treatment only protects the surface. If you’d like more information on our research into this contact us and we’ll email you the conclusions form our research. Treated pine may be appropriate in some situations, but we know what we’d rather have containing the soil we grow food for our families in!
What tools do I need to assemble my Kitset Cypress VEG Bed?
You’ll need yourself, a friend, and a power drill (whether cordless or not) with a drill bit and a standard hex bit (these last two are purchasable from us). That’s it. If you don’t have access to a drill let us know and we’ll figure something out.
How far will you deliver?
Anywhere in greater Melbourne. See here for details.
What if I want you to help build my bed / fill my bed with soil?
We can help, see our page on Installed VEG Beds.
What height bed do I need?
We usually recommend 40cm or two sleepers high. This gives a good depth of soil, reducing bending, and provides a comfortable height for sitting. If you have a bad back or a big dog, consider 80cm or four sleepers high. If you’re not sure, try 60cm or three sleepers high. If you want maximum area at lowest cost go 20cm or one sleeper high.
Do I need flat ground?
It’s easier, but no. You can put your veggie bed on a terrace or even use it as part of a retaining wall. These beds are strong!
How long will it take to assemble my bed?
It takes us about 30 minutes to assemble a 40cm high, 2m long, 1.2m wide bed. We’ve had a lot of practice though, and for your first time you should pace yourself and allow at least two hours to be safe. It will be much easier with a friend or two.