Gardening on a hill

ediej1209(5 N Central OH)May 11, 2013

We live on a hill. It's never really been much of an issue for us before because we've always had either a small garden or just done raised beds/containers. But this year for some reason, DH decided to get ambitious and had a neighbor plow up a pretty big garden area. So the garden goes downhill from east to west, and on the west side next to us is a brushfield with some trees right along the proprty line (so we will be putting up an electric fence, too.) I'm not good with measuring angles, but it's a very noticable drop. Should we run our rows east-west or north-south? And what should be uphill and what down - we are going to plant cabbage and broccoli this week, then Memorial Weekend we will be planting bush beans, squashes (bushy types, not vining), cherry tomatoes, and corn.

Thanks so much,

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jrslick (North Central Kansas, Zone 5B)

I garden on hill too.

If you make a raised bed going across the hill, you will be fine. To make a quick raised bed, just till your rows and rake up the soil in a hill.


    Bookmark   May 12, 2013 at 12:10AM
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I used to garden on a hill and made the mistake of one year running the rows across the hill instead of down the hill. They held lots of water and or washed away...dummy me....
Just run your rows east to west and put the taller plants on the bottom of the hill because depending on the grade of your hill tall plants at the top may shade the bottom. The good news is your garden should drain well this way.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2013 at 12:02PM
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ediej1209(5 N Central OH)

Thanks so much - I kind of have an idea of what we're going to have to do now. I appreciate the help!

    Bookmark   May 12, 2013 at 8:38PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

You can always terrace it. Often done on really steep inclines to make the space usable. Google Images has lots of pics of beautiful terraced gardens.


    Bookmark   May 12, 2013 at 10:33PM
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tishtoshnm Zone 6/NM

If you go along the hill and are concerned about drainage, all you need to do is stagger channels for the overflow to drain to the next level down. This gives the benefit of controlling the water flow.

If you are interested in a little research, you can search for terms such as swales and contours. There is a book on rainwater harvesting using earth works that gives great information on siting these and how to build. My local library carried it.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 1:12AM
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