Top 10 Reasons To Use Raised Beds in Your Garden
Raised beds are created by piling soil in the garden or using enclosed wooden boxes or other materials to hold soil in place for planting various crops. The concept isn’t new, but raised beds are gradually gaining in popularity among gardeners anew.
There are many reasons why growers use raised beds. Some use it to make the most out of every square inch of space, while others add raised beds to their garden purely for aesthetics. If you are considering using raised beds, what are the benefits you’ll reap from these structures? Is your outdoor space suitable for raised bed gardening?
Continue reading this guide to find out!
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Why Use Raised Beds?
Using raised beds has benefits. Here are the top 10 reasons to add raised bed planters to your garden:
Improve drainage: Raised beds benefit gardeners who live in rainy, marshy, or flood-prone regions. These structures are also perfect for gardens with loose soil. Raised beds have a standard depth of 11 to 12 inches – these will protect the soil from runoff and prevent fertile topsoil from being washed away. It protects from water runoffs, so topsoil or loose soil particles won’t be washed away even in heavy rains and floods.
Effective weed control: Weeding is backbreaking work, and no gardener ever enjoys pulling weeds by hand under the sun’s heat. This goes especially for big gardens with lots of blank spaces – weeds will sprout everywhere! Using raised beds slows weed growth down, making weeds easier on the back. Because plants are grown confined, weeds have limited space to grow, and some won’t get a chance to seed at all. Protected soils prevent grass from infiltrating too.
Early start in the season: Want to maximize every growing season by starting early? It’s only possible through raised bed gardening. Because the soil is protected from the elements, you can grow various off-season crops. The soil within raised beds dries out faster in the spring, warms up quickly in the winter, and cools down at the height of the summer. Enriched soil within raised beds regulates temperature better than nutrient-poor, exposed garden soils.
Protects from pests: Burrowing and nibbling pests like worms, parasitic insects, and even small rodents can destroy a garden within a day! And keeping these critters away from your precious crops can feel like an uphill battle if the plants are exposed to the elements. Using raised beds gives you a better chance against pests, especially burrowing insects and rodents. The barrier prevents pests from coming in and destroying the plants. Combined with plant covers, you can provide better protection from pets with raised beds.
Prevents soil contamination: Wooden raised beds work as a barrier that protects soil from contamination, particularly heavy metals, chemicals, and pathogens. The soil is contained within a space and not exposed to the elements, which can make it vulnerable to toxicity. Adding compost will further boost soil nutrients and dilute harmful chemicals’ concentrations.
Prevents soil compaction: Soil compaction is a regular occurrence in the garden, though an unwelcome one if you have mobility issues. The soil type, moisture content, and climate can cause soil compaction. Overworking the soil, digging when wet, and heavy foot traffic contributes to poor soil texture and compaction. A raised bed protects the soil from the elements and factors that affect its texture. You will work the soil less because it can maintain an ideal consistency for growing different crops. Also, raised beds promote better drainage, which helps prevent soil compaction.
Increased yields: Plants grown in raised beds will produce more fruits. That’s because the crops are protected from pests. The soil warms up more quickly, allowing growers to get an early start in the season for planting. You can expect higher yields during harvest season with consistent soil temperature and an early start!
Easy gardening tasks: Sitting down, kneeling, or bending while doing garden tasks can lead to back and joint pain. Weeding by hand may cause joint and muscle pain. Raised beds make gardening easier, so tasks are done much faster. This benefits busy people who need to do their gardening quickly and individuals with mobility issues. Investing in raised beds will make gardening tasks a cinch to complete.
Space efficient: Raised beds enable you to make the most out of every space for growing crops. These products come in various styles, but for small to medium raised beds, tiered raised beds will give you more room to grow multiple plants, including herbs and vegetables. You can set up some tiered raised beds and try companion planting. This will double the yield while optimizing space in your garden.
Better garden design: A well-planned garden design is essential for plant growth. You must figure out the proper location for planting crops or flowers to ensure they get enough sun. Raised beds enhance your garden’s beauty while protecting your crops from the elements. With raised beds, you can organize different crops according to your liking. You can decorate the garden to improve curb appeal and add value to your home. If the space is limited, you can maximize even the smallest free space for gardening using raised beds. Raised beds are flexible too. You can choose what parts of your outdoor space to turn into a garden despite obstacles like slopes or poor soil health.
How to Build a Raised Garden Bed
Building a raised bed is easy. You can do it at home using salvaged wood and some tools. Here are the steps to building a raised garden bed:
Step 1: Start by measuring the site where you will set the raised bed. Decide the size, shape, and style of the raised bed you’d like to build. As for the material, wood is the most popular, but choose a material that fits your budget and needs.
Step 2: Prep the site for the raised bed by leveling the soil, removing weeds, and clearing the space of unwanted debris.
Step 3: Cut the material to size and assemble the sides using screws or nails – if you use wood planks. Adjust the structure by setting the assembled raised bed frame on the prepped site and level.
Step 4: Fill the raised bed frame with a potting mix (soil enriched with compost or organic fertilizer). Pack the soil firmly into the raised bed. Once this is done, you can start planting seeds or transferring the seedlings to the raised bed.
Where to Buy Raised Garden Beds and Raised Bed Components
You can buy raised garden beds and their components in these places:
Home supplies store: home improvement retailers like Lowe’s or Home Depot offer a variety of raised garden beds and components.
Online retailers: Retailers like ECOgardener, Wayfair, and Amazon offer a selection of garden beds and components in varying price points and designs, including elevated raised beds and classic raised bed designs.
Hardware stores: Some hardware stores offer selected raised beds in different materials.
Gardening supply stores: Garden supplies stores and plant nurseries carry raised garden beds and components. Some stores even offer installation services.
Custom builders: Custom-made raised beds can be pricey, but this option is perfect if you want a specific design. A carpenter or a woodworker can build the raised bed according to your desired material and design.
ECOgardener and Raised Bed Gardening
ECOgardener is one of the trusted names in quality gardening tools and supplies. Our raised beds are made from durable, non-treated fir. We offer a range of designs to choose from, as well as bundles and gardening components.
Using raised beds enables you to provide a tailored growing environment for your plants. With raised beds made from sustainable, durable materials, you can grow a bounty of fruits, vegetables, and herbs!
Shop here today and take advantage of our special offers for raised bed planters.