Allotment paths, a simple duckboard design
Over the last four years i’ve tried various ways of creating paths and this design has been the most successful. Yes you’ve guessed it they are made from pallets. They are easy to make with a few basic tools as well as being easy to put down and just as importantly easy to pull up. You get x2 sections of duckboard per pallet. 15″ to 16″ inches seems to be the optimal width in my opinion, just wide enough without being to weak. This 15-16 inch width luckily also seems to be the average width between struts on pallets.
This is by far the quickest build of all of my designs, Watch Bernie with his one minute build impressive. But cleverly these duckboards have a dual role. Not only is it a path but it is also leaf wormery. By digging a shallow trench for the duckboard to sit in you are making use of this 3 inches of top soil to add to your mounded beds, that would have gone to waste under the duckboard.
Underneath the duckboard in the shallow trench we are going to spread a central ridge of leaf litter which we cover with a narrow 16″ wide strip of old carpet or weed suppressing sheet. The worms over the course of the year will eat this leaf litter pulling it down into the soil and converting it to high quality worm casts. Also the fabric stops the duckboard support struts from sucking up too much water. At the end of the season when putting these duckboards under cover to overwinter we can rake up all the composted leaf litter and worm casts to add to our Sunken Tugboat annual vegetable growing beds. Also these duckboard covered paths create a central covered ridge running all the way through your plot where worms can thrive and will hopefully spread out into the nearby growing beds.
* On my allotment I have only used these duckboard path sections for the main thoroughfare that runs through the plot, approx x10 sections.
** You will notice that the slats are extended by an inch over on one edge of the duckboard. The reason being is that it holds in place the Block Paving brick edging.