Step 5: Prepare the soil

Roger Cook and young boy use pitchforks to turn the soil under the raised garden bed area
Photo: Ask This Old House TV
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Set the frame aside. Using a sod cutter or grub hoe, skim away the grass layer. Increase drainage for your garden by turning the soil beneath the bed area with a pitchfork or rotary tiller.
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    Tools List

    • circular saw
      Jigsaw or circular saw
    • drill
      Drill/driver
    • framing square
      Framing square
    • edger
      Edger or spade
    • grub hoe
      Sod cutter or grub hoe
    • pitchfork
      Pitchfork or rotary tiller
    • four-foot level
      4-foot level
    • sledge hammer
      Sledgehammer
    • wheelbarrow
      Wheelbarrow
    • reciprocating saw
      Reciprocating saw or handsaw

    Shopping List

    1. One 8-foot length of 2x10 cedar

    2. Two 10-foot lengths of 2x10 cedar

    3. Two 10-foot lengths of 2x4 cedar

    4. 3-inch deck screws

    5. Garden soil
    6. Compost

    7. Starter fertilizer appropriate for vegetables

    8. Vegetable seeds or seedlings

    9. Grass clippings for mulch