Row / Bed Marker

Tool Concept


The tool shown here is a row/bed marker that is rolled out before direct seeding or transplanting. It's purpose is to quickly mark out beds at 1' intervals with an in-row spacing of 11" so that when I direct seed and transplant, crops will be planted on a grid for easy cultivation, harvesting and will facilitate in keeping track of yields / plants per bed.
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I made two row markers specifically for the farm I work on -- we have 30" beds. Each marker is 22" wide, one marks three rows and the other four, both of which mark a perpendicular line every foot.

Materials List: 3/4" Advantech Plywood - less than one sheet 1"x 2" hard wood, I used red oak - length depends on your size markers black iron pipe - 2 pieces at 1/2" x 36", 2 pieces at 1/2" x 24" (I had the guy at lowes cut these pieces in half and thread each end in order to fit into a union. 4 black iron elbows 1 black iron union teflon tape wood glue 2.5" screws pipe clamps 5lb and 3lb weights

Total cost is about $60-$65 a marker.

  1. cut out your circles from the plywood - I did an 11" diameter which will roll out 3 perpendicular lines every foot.
  2. drill holes in center to fit 1/2" black iron pipe
  3. cut notches to fit red oak cross pieces
  4. set in oak pieces into plywood circles, glue and screw
  5. set pipe into marker with additional weights -- add as many as needed for your soil (you might have to do some trials here. I used about 16 lbs for my three row marker
  6. thread elbows and 36" pipe lengths. finish by threading the union last.
  7. use pipe clamps to hold weights onto pipe -- this will prevent them from sliding around and give even weight pressure in the bed.

It's still too cold for me to use this but I am considering making an adjustment in the way you push the marker. Since I will be walking down the pathway, I might switch out an elbow for a tee fitting to one of the upper corners and add a 12" pipe to extend out so that I can push the marker more easily from the pathway. This is still to be determined so I will update once we start prepping beds.


On our farm, we use beds on 6 foot centers (beds are 4 feet wide), and mark our beds with our cultivating tractor (Farmall 100). We made a new three-row marker this year because we decided to change our spacing to 14 inches between rows, to reduce the amount of space we need to cultivate. We use essentially the same wooden marker with pipe as Audrey, but clamp the pipe onto rear-mounted round stock. We mounted the pipe onto the round stock using pipe clamps, and to prevent the pipe from sliding out of the clamps or the marker from sliding around when mounted on the tractor, we drilled holes into the pipe and used washers and cotter pins to secure the marker (See attached photo).

Other differences - we made the whole thing out of 3/4 inch plywood, instead of board for the lateral pieces.

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