Good weather and no builder on site meant Tania and I spent the weekend in the garden. The task for this weekend was to get the fruit trees that have been sitting on our front steps into the soil. My parents have apple and lemon trees in the their garden but they are so short and squat that mowing under them is a real pain. To avoid that I built three pretty simple boxes that cost just $40 NZD all up.

Materials:

Six 15×62.5cm Radiata planks (for the fronts)

Six 15×57.5cm Radiata planks (for the sides)

Twelve x 30cm Radiata steaks: H3 treated

pack of galvanized nails (at least 72)

big tub of black acrylic paint.

The planks were purposefully cut to have a difference of 5cm between the front and side pieces. They are 2.5cm thick so the over lap at the corners makes them square.

tree boxes front panelstree boxes completed

Nail the steaks to the shorter planks, then the longer planks. It is best to nail to the steaks rather than each other so that if one ever comes off it doesn’t take the others with it.

You’ll want to remove the grass from beneath the boxes so it doesn’t grow up and smother what ever you’re planting there. Just place the box where you want it and then dig around the edge to mark the square, remove the box and cut lines across the area a couple of inches deep. Slide the spade under neath and you’ll be able to life the turf right off. Of course you can dig it however you want but we needed to transplant the grass to cover and area where I removed a tree stump.

Tree boxes removing soilPainting the boxesflattening the boxes

Be careful when pushing the boxes into the ground, you wouldn’t want one side to get ahead of the others incase it twists the wood. You could knock each corner one by one, but if you’ve got a lovely assistant *waves hands and Tania enters stage left* you could do it like we did and use four feet to push all corners in simultaneously.

The end result

So we now have lemon, lime and mandarin trees in the front garden. We’ve got plans for another four. Perhaps nectarine, apple, pear and plum. A veritable orchard I tell you :-)

All doneLime treetree boxes job done

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2 Responses to “Tree boxes”

  1. Levi Says:

    Sounds delicious… in a few years. If you’re taking votes, I like peaches better than nectarines. ;)

    As a side note, I’m not familiar with H3 treatment, but is it safe for foods? I have to be careful not to use treated lumber here around my garden as the treatment chemicals are nasty and leach out into the ground (and into my veggies). We use cedar or redwood instead, since those are both naturally resistant to bugs and rotting.

  2. craig Says:

    We have macrocarpa here, I really like the idea but it’s prohibitively expensive. H3 is weather proof, H5 means it can be put in the ground and not rot. We used an acrylic paint to try to prevent any seepage, hopefully it’s less harmful than the wood treatment stuff :/

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