Bed generator help

I am having trouble creating individual beds with the bed generator in each of my “areas”. The help video didn’t give me much as far as troubleshooting. Anyone an expert?

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Thanks for joining the forum @smallaxefarm!

The user guide has a brief video, but also describes the steps:

To use the bed generator to generate beds, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the “Areas” page (from the main menu) and click the “Bed generator” tab.
  2. Select the field that the beds will be created within.
  3. Enter the number of beds that should be generated within the field.
  4. Set the orientation of the beds, and use the “Preview” button to see how they look.
  5. When you are satisfied with the preview, click the “Generate” button to generate the beds.

Beds will be numbered and labeled using the parent area’s name.

Does that help?

More info via email from @smallaxefarm:

It just says the same thing each time. "The selected area is not a polygon. Etc…like the picture below. What am I doing wrong?

Ah OK! So that probably means you drew your parent area as a line, not as a polygon. The difference is that a polygon is a closed-loop, and that’s necessary for the bed generator to be able to divide it up into sub-areas.

Easiest thing to do is re-draw the area as a polgyon. To do that:

  1. Edit the area
  2. Click the “X” button in the map to clear the old shape.
  3. Click the polygon button (looks like a pentagon next to the line button).
  4. Redraw the shape - if you double-click while you are drawing a polygon, it will automatically finish it for you by connecting the first and last points.

Give that a try - it should allow you to use the bed generator.

Wow. This is really amazing. I just generated a bunch of beds. Great software! Did it say anywhere in the instructions of creating your areas that if you want to utilize the bed generator you need to create them with the polygon in lieu of the line? I may have missed it. Thanks for the help!

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Another question about the bed generator. I made a bed with 8 child areas and it should have been 10. Is there a way to edit it easily or do I need to delete and recreate?

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Ah no - that is one of the major limitations of the bed generator. Once you generate areas, you can’t add/edit them again in bulk.

However, you can delete them all and then redo them from scratch. But… only if you haven’t recorded any logs associated with those areas. Once an area has logs associated with it, it cannot be deleted (for archival purposes).

You can delete areas in bulk by going to the Areas menu item, clicking the checkbox next to the areas you want to delete, and then clicking the “Delete” button that appears at the bottom. If you have any logs associated with those areas, it will prevent you from deleting.

OK…I don’t have any logs yet so it sounds like I can choose that particular “bed”, delete it, and reconfigure. Is that the case or do I need to delete the whole “field” it is within?

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You can delete all of them in a single step on the main Areas list (from the main menu). You will delete the individual beds themselves, not the parent area. Just click the checkbox next to each bed and then click the red “Delete” button that appears at the bottom.

That was really helpful and it did the trick. Thanks!

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Question about bed generation. When I generate say an 8 bed section on the map, it is assigning the beds in a bottom to top fashion, bed 1 being on the bottom and bed 8 being at the top of the field. We want them to be the opposite…bed 1 starting at the top. Is there anyway to make this switch or do I need to edit each bed manually.

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Yes! This is a bit of a trick but it’s simple: take whatever “orientation” you used, and add 180 to it (wrapping around 360 to 0). This basically reverses the orientation, so the beds turn out the same, but they get numbered in the opposite order.

I’d love to make that “orientation” field a little easier to use, and show a preview of the generated bed names in the tool… that would be a good next step for it.

Thanks! I’ll give it a try

Heidi Choate & Evan Perkins
Small Axe Farm
731 Whitehill Rd.
East Ryegate, VT 05042

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Ok…so when I go into “areas” and select to edit the individual beds, say bed 1 for example (which I want to be labeled bed 8)…it doesn’t show the orientation I chose for this so I can’t change it. When I go into the actual block area that I created to house these 8 beds and try to edit the orientation there, it doesn’t show the bed orientation there either. I’m forgetting how to get in to change orientation of a block of beds. I know to add 180 degrees but can’t figure out where to do that.

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Ah sorry I should have clarified: it only works BEFORE you generate the beds. So since you’ve already generated them, you can either a) delete them and regenerate, or b) rename them individually. There isn’t a way to modify them with the same tool after they’ve been generated (yet). :slight_smile:

I also have some bed generator questions! We have wide pathways on our farm and are wondering if there is a best practice for differentiating pathways from bed space. Would each bed and each pathway have to be different polygons? Or is there a way to use the generator to put in bed width and pathway width? Or, have others had this same question and determined that it wasn’t worth differentiating? (Main concerns are misconstruing soil test measurements when certain amendments are not broadcast spread and instead just laid on beds.) Thanks for any thoughts!

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Hi @hblackmer! Great question - someone else asked this once a long time ago, but I can’t find the link… I remember thinking that adding a pathway width option to the generator would be a great next step, and ultimately the “most accurate” solution to the issue you describe. I think most users are just including pathway width in their generated areas currently. That’s what I do, but I have pretty narrow pathways.

I’d love to see the Bed Generator evolve into a more flexible tool that provides other options as well. Here are some related feature requests: