Potager and the Square Foot Garden

I built my square foot garden (4 foot x 8 foot) a month ago and it’s in full production with peas, carrots, radishes, laitues, bettegraves, napa cabbage, garlic. The whole idea of a french potager fascinates me because traditionally, most American garden are used only from spring to the end of summer. I hope to grow into a potager gardener this year!

Aah! I think get it now! It’s one square foot per type of plant - but different numbers of plants per square foot according to their air and root space needs.

Any advice on the box? Does it have a bottom or is it just an enclosed bit of ground. What goes in the box? Is it just the ordinary terreau you get in any garden centre?

I have a convenient and possibly suitable space on a concrete base. It used to be an enclosed dog run. If I build a box, with a bottom to it, on the concrete, how deep should it be? Can I raise it so that I don’t have to bend down too much to do the planting, weeding, etc?

I build boats so I think I could manage a suitable box if someone could tell me what features should be incorporated.

Square foot gardening takes some restraint, if you can believe it. Often, you’ll want to seed more then you can sow. Each square foot represents the happy plants future home. For example, (1) tomato plant in one square foot, (9) beets in one square foot, (12) carrots in one square foot, and so one. Traditionally, one would spray seeds in a row and thin them out later. What a waste of time and seeds! Be sure to put you veggie box in a spot that receives at least 6 hours of direct sun light. Furthermore, put your box near a water source, like a hose, because those babies needs water every day! I put my box near my house, not far away in the yard. I like it convenient to picks fresh goodies everyday, especially the herbs. Happy gardening!

As I hate gardening it looks about the right size for me. How about some advice - for an absolute beginner - on how to do something similar?

My neighbour visits his garden every day of the year, and picks something to eat - in winter the pickings are slimmer than in other seasons, but he has leeks, cabbage, kale, and other odds and ends - so he really does eat fresh from his potager every day.

We need pics of your garden Sierra! Fab concept.


Mel Bartholomew taught me how to plant my first square foot garden several years ago. A 4 x 8 foot garden box is plenty for my husband and me.