What is Raised Bed: An Introduction to Raised Bed Gardening
Also known as garden boxes, raised beds are elevated and freestanding garden plots within an enclosed, box-like frame. The garden beds are used to grow vegetables, fruits, and flowers. The garden plots are set higher than the surrounding soil to prevent erosion, control pests, and minimize garden maintenance.
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Why Use Raised Garden Beds?
Easy Gardening: With raised beds, you can amend the soil, grow crops, remove weeds, and keep pests away within the box-like enclosures, letting you maintain your garden with ease.
Higher Yields: You’d think crowding will be an issue when growing crops in a raised garden bed, but as long as you are setting the plants just far enough, you’ll be able to fit more plants in it and enjoy higher yields. The enclosure also protects the plants and plant roots from nibbling and burrowing pests.
Safer Access: Gardening can be hard on the back if you are tending to a big garden. But growing plants in raised beds makes it easier to maintain your plants. This goes especially for people with limited mobility or those with bad backs. Also, your outdoor space could provide safer access for walkers and people on wheelchairs.
Better Pest Control: If burrowing pests and nibbling insects were a huge problem before, they wouldn’t be now that you’re growing your plants in a raised bed. You can also install a cover over the beds to protect the plants from flying pests. The frame could also support covers that’ll protect the plants from frost.
Benefits and Drawbacks of Raised Beds
What are the benefits of using raised garden beds? These planter boxes have many uses especially for those gardeners who grow their own food in their backyard garden. However, it is also important to know the limitations of using raised beds for growing plants. Let’s take a look at the known advantages and disadvantages of using a raised bed.
An Early Start: Raised beds allow the soil to heat up more quickly in the spring season compared to their in-ground counterparts. This will enable you to grow your crops much earlier and enjoy a longer growing season in general.
Better Soil Protection: Because the soil is protected from the elements, the crops are shielded from foot traffic, harsh weather conditions, and pests. The soil doesn’t get compacted in a well-maintained garden bed, and if it does, it will be much easier to work the soil because it’s confined in a small space. With raised beds, children and pets won’t trample the plants. You can water the crops without worrying about standing water. The roots are protected from the harsh elements.
Fits More Plants: Raised beds, no matter the size, lets you grow more plants in a small space. The tighter spacing of plants within the raised beds enables you to maximize every square inch of free space in your backyard. Also, dividing your crops into different raised beds will elevate the look of your outdoor space while making gardening easier. You’ll spend less time tending to the garden and more time enjoying your hard work.
Drought Stress: Because raised beds drain water away from the soil quickly, it could increase the temperature of the soil, which may lead to drought stress during the summer season. This can be easily fixed by simply adding extra mulch to cool the soil or installing supplementary irrigation.
Reduced Air Circulation: If you’ve set the plants too close to each other, air won’t be able to circulate properly. When this happens, it raises the humidity level, paving the way for plant diseases. To prevent this, you have to give each plant room to grow. The raised beds should be of the right size for the garden space.
Extra Cost: You can make your own raised beds using materials like bricks, rocks, or lumber. But if you’re not handy with tools, you can buy pre-assembled raised beds like the ECO Gardener raised bed planters. Although buying raised beds means spending more on the garden, these products have so many benefits.
Do the Benefits of Raised Beds Outweigh the Costs?
Yes, raised beds are worth the extra expense. Buying raised beds will cost you money, but the benefits far outweigh whatever cons raised beds have. If you want to enjoy more yields, improve the soil quality, and make garden maintenance easier, we highly suggest using raised beds. You may also read our blog “Ultimate Guide to Raised Bed Gardening” for more tips and info.