Even though raised bed gardening isn’t new, many gardeners are now leaning further towards using this method to grow their plants and vegetables. For those who aren’t aware, a raised bed is a garden bed where the soil is piled above ground level and enclosed. Here are 10 reasons why a raised garden bed is better?
Raised beds can be created by heaping soil into a pile or by using enclosed boxes made from wood, blocks, rocks, and other materials to hold the soil in place. It is important to note that raised beds do not have a base that would prevent soil from falling out the bottom.
It is discovered that this gardening method is ideal to gain better results and also limits erosion. Do you want to start gardening but have limited space? Trying to decide how to begin and which gardening method to use?
1. Good For Drainage
If you’re living in an area where there is constant heavy rainfall or flooding, a raised garden bed has a very good drainage system and would be suitable for use. The height of raised beds is popularly 11” and approximately 12” in depth.
The soil in the raised bed is loose and so water is able to seep through the beds not holding too much or too little. It also limits a quick runoff that may wash away the fertile topsoil. A significant number of plants grow perfectly in moist soil but others do not.
This is a case where a substantial amount of water is surrounding the roots of the plants and interferes with proper breathing. Too much moisture can cause fungal disease and bacteria.
2. Better Root Spread
Plant roots spread easier when the soil in which they are planted is loose. The frame bed traps moisture way longer than other traditional raised beds since water loss is reduced from each side.
This allows the bed to retain sufficient moisture preventing dryness after being watered. This is particularly important when growing vegetables as a flourishing root system secures the plants, collects sufficient water and nutrients, which then yields a great amount of produce.
Plants that are grown directly in the ground often have a hollow root system unless the soil was tilled before planting anything. Those plants are not able to acquire the dampness in the deeper areas of the soil and will become dehydrated as soon as that surface moisture evaporates.
3. Fewer Weeds
If you’re not a fan of constantly removing weeds then raised beds usually have very few of that issue. Even after clearing the ground by digging up all the weeds, in a short while you will realize more growth within the garden.
A lot of people may not be aware that when tilling weed seeds are buried, and that gives them the chance to pullulate. When you irrigate your plants and ensure they are exposed to sunlight, that offers weeds an opportunity to shoot once again by feeding on the nutrients intended for your vegetables and other plants.
When making raised garden beds you can fill the frame with fertilizer and soil that is weed-free. Loose soil makes it easier to uproot the few weeds that may sprout. Another way to limit weed growth is to place plants closer to each other as that helps suffocate the weeds. Other gardeners choose to spread newspaper, cardboard, or hardware cloth underneath their garden beds to prevent weed growth.
4. Avoids Contaminated Soil
A raised garden bed avoids contaminated soil. A traditional garden bed positioned on the ground is highly like to contain bacteria and other contaminants. Ingesting heavy metals is dangerous and very common among urban gardeners where harmful substances are emitted from vehicles and assorted in the soil where you may plant your vegetables.
Vegetables such as tomatoes and greens absorb metals like lead from contaminated soil. To avoid this refrain from constructing raised beds close to the road or try planting high hick hedges and investigate the previous use of the land. No pollution is in the soil when a raised bed is used as new soil is added when seeds are planted that haven’t been contaminated.
5. Easier Without tilling the Soil
Setting up a raised bed garden is really a process of making gardening easy. Maintaining raised beds requires very little manual work as there is no need to till the soil yearly to add fertilizer.
As a gardener, you can simply add mulch, compost, and other soil conditioners on top of the existing soil. It may sound odd, but doing nothing actually builds an organic component over time.
This natural process remains efficient thanks to an excellent drainage system and the help of insects such as worms that seep into the dirt, breaking and loosening the soil as they roam around
6. Gardeners Can Plant Early
If you live in a country with a cold climate, it is noticeable that the growing season tends to be short. During winter it is next to impossible to efficiently do gardening from the ground as it is frozen and takes a very long time to get warm.
A big benefit of using raised garden beds is that the soil is usually warmer than the ground soil which means you can begin to plant earlier and have a much longer gardening season. Soil that has been frozen during the winter will take a while to defrost which is quite a slow process.
The balanced soil composition in raised bed gardens has a great drainage system and holds heat much longer. This is awesome if you’d like to see your garden started soon and flourishing in the spring.
7. Raised Beds Can Be Temporary
Raised beds allow gardeners who are living at a rented location to be able to do what they love. Discuss with your landlord and present some beautiful photos of what a raised bed garden looks like.
Being able to plant your favorite flowers or vegetables in a neat and organized fashion with garden boxes built from different materials to be creative not only adds a beautiful feature but also increases property value.
If that poses to be an issue, a removable garden box can be used to do temporary gardening. Place cardboard at the base or landscape fabric and then lower the temporary garden box on top and fill with soil. When it’s time to leave, remove the box and spread the soil across the ground.
8. Great for Beginners
The entire process of preparing and nurturing a garden for someone who has never done any form of gardening can be quite unnerving.
A raised garden bed is very good for beginners as it removes several barriers for those interested to try. They can be a little more costly but tend to produce quicker and great results after the first attempt.
This way of gardening is easy and isn’t very hard to care for. To start, gardeners must identify the type of soil and a pH test can be used to determine the acidity or alkalinity of the soil. Those two are not necessarily bad but it all depends on what will be planted.
9. Easier to Control Pests
Since raised garden beds are above ground with a box, it is can be difficult for some insects to make their way into your vegetation and other plants to cause a problem.
Also using a special cloth or fabric at the base of the raised garden will leave a number of insects and rodents disappointed as they won’t be able to dig their way into the box and wreak havoc on fruits and vegetables. If the issue isn’t about pests but your pets, then consider increasing the height of the box or getting a fence for the area.
10. Raised Beds Look Attractive
It can be very attractive which is another reason why gardeners create raised bed gardens. They help to keep your garden organized and looks really fancy.
Using your creative skill, you can make a design with the garden boxes and it is very useful if you do not have a lot of space. When selecting materials to build the boxes avoid using treated wood, and railway ties which can be harmful as the chemical can seep into your plants and badly affect them. Be cautious in selecting materials then go crazy creative with the designs you like.
Raised garden beds are also beneficial to persons with mobility issues such as bending and stretching when tending to plants. Beds can be spaced to facilitate wheelchair movement and make it easier to reap vegetables and flowers. Based on the size and shape of an individual raised garden bed the price may vary between $50 to $2,000. This does not include the cost of soil to fill each garden box.
We hope this information was able to help you identify 10 reasons why a raised garden bed is better and a great choice.
Other Related Garden Articles
- Easy Fruits And Vegetables To Grow
- How To Start Organic Farming
- How To Grow Lettuce
- Herb Gardening For Beginners
- 10 Organic Gardening Hacks That Will Make Your Life Easier
Get discounted copies of my cookbook here.
Fortunately, because of the Ads on our website, readers and subscribers of Healthier Steps are sponsoring many underprivileged families.