Turning a sandbox into a garden, need some advice?

rissaroo1234 asks: Turning a sandbox into a garden, need some advice?
We have this old, unused sandbox in our yard that I would like to convert into a raised bed veggie garden. And I have a few questions about how to make this happen.

1) Under the sand and above the dirt, there is this liner/tarp thing. Should I leave that there, remove it, or remove it and place it with a different kind of liner?

2) Our soil is pretty cruddy. Lots of rocks. So I’ll be filling it probably with mirical grow soil. But would it be better to use the potting soil kind or the flower bed soil kind?

3) Worms are suppost to be good for gardens, right? I would like to add some to my garden. I don’t want to compost I just want they’re help fertilizing and such. Would normal nightcrawlers sold as fishing bait work okay for this or do I have to order some special type of worm?

I live in the twin cities area of Minnesota, to give you an idea of how the climate is here. We get pretty hot summers and really cold winters. The sandbox is about 4ft by 5ft and about 8inch deep. If you wanna know any other details that I might be forgetting them just ask and I’ll add them in as extra details. Thanks!
Change of plans on the soil- my dad found a local place were we can get “garden blend” soil, which is 45% compost, 45% black dirt and 10% sand, that’s a decent price ($ 21 a cubic yard) so we will probably just do that

The answer voted best is:

Answer by C
Better to take the liner off the bottom of the box so that the soil will drain freely.
Buy yourself a garden riddle and seive the stones and rubbish out of the garden soil.
Put the stones at the bottom of the box.
Mix the riddled soil 50/50 with potting compost and fill the box to just below the rim.
If dig around in your garden you should find worms in the ground to put into your sandbox garden but if you’ve taken the liner off the bottom the worms can find their own way in there.
You shouldn’t have to spend anything like as much as you think setting the garden up and what you save on compost and worms you can spend on plants.

Add your own answer in the comments!

Powered by Yahoo answers!

One comment

  1. 1) liner/tarp – if you are using the area as a raised bed veggie garden, I would suggest leaving the liner in place. It will help prevent plants that spread via rhizomes (essentially specialized roots) from invading your veggie bed resulting in less weeding being required. Lots of ornamental garden plants and varieties of grasses spread this way.

    2) You have already resolved this.

    3) For both gardening and composting purposes, red worms (red wrigglers) are the most recommended. There is a Minnesota specific website that contains links to four local distributors:


    Prices and amounts vary, a quick read indicated they can start as low as $ 7 (given the small area of this garden area, you will not require a lot.

    I would be cautious purchasing “nightcrawlers” from a bait shop. There is a variety of earthworm that we refer to as a “dew” worm, technical name is Lumbricus terrestris (and if you search you will also find that they are sometimes referred to as nightcrawlers) that is an invasive and destructive species… they are much, much larger than red wrigglers, and will cause “mounding” problems if they escape the veggie garden and invade the lawns. When they come to the surface to feed they create mounds or hills that will seriously disrupt your lawn area, they won’t make you very popular with the neighbours either, since they are long lived (up to 9 years) and they tend to spread from one yard to the next. [edited to add, I am in Alberta, Canada – climate conditions are similar to yours in many respects… so please don’t count on cold weather to deal with any potential dew worm infestation]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.