Raised Garden Bed Kits For Your Vegetable or Flower Garden
Gardening in a Raised Bed
Have you ever wanted to garden in your backyard in a small space, rather contained, and with confined borders? If your answer is yes, then a raised bed garden kit is the solution to your needs. Raised bed gardens allow you to locate your garden wherever you choose! Perhaps you just want it in a certain area of your yard or with an edge to keep out pets. The trek to our garden is about 40 yards from our backdoor and even though we choose to have it that way, putting up a raised bed garden could bring it to within 10 yards of our house.
Soil Control Advantages
A raised bed solves many soil problems because you have total control over the soil that you place in the raised garden bed. You can use any type of potting soil mix or even a soilless mix if you want, reducing the presence of many soil-borne diseases and pests. You also easily manage drainage and watering with a raised garden bed kit. Since you don't typically walk on a raised garden bed the soil structure is much better, with improved aeration and water retention. You can use intensive gardening techniques like square foot gardening to boost the yields you get from your vegetable plantings. Planting in close spacing not only produces more crops per square foot, but reduces weeds and this type of bed requires less water.
Location and Accessibility Advantages
There are advantages for the gardener also when using a raised bed system. The raised bed itself is typically easier to reach, and some are built at waist level to allow elderly gardeners access or people with back problems to have easy access to the bed. Another key advantage is that you can put a raised bed many places where a typical garden wouldn't work, such as a school yard or somewhere you can control your pet from getting to. One attractive raised bed solution is a cedar raised bed, which not only lasts a long time but has an attractive knotty appearance.
There is even a brand that you can reshape and relocate which comes in mighty handy if you are on the move often. It also gives you flexibility in your yard in terms of location of your garden.
Build It Yourself
The easiest way to get a raised bed is to buy one of the raised bed kits. But, for the do-it-yourself gardener, it is not that difficult to build a raised garden bed from raw lumber. The most difficult part for many gardeners is getting the corners square, and for that there are raised garden bed corner brackets available from many sources. Choose corners that are the right height for your lumber, and note that there are even corners available that let you create shapes other than simple rectangles with angles other than ninety degrees.
There are many books on the market with excellent instructions. Perhaps from a local discount book store where the books are usually half price.
Elevated Raised Bed Garden
For the Handicapped or Elderly
If you are unable to bend over to garden, an elevated raised bed is the answer to your desire to continue gardening. You can have one or several in a row. If you have a handyman in your family, you may choose to make several of these lined up in a row just as you would rows in your in-ground garden. Our local community garden recently received a grant to elevate eight of their 48 garden beds for use by Veterans - a wonderful way for the community to give back to those who served our country!
At the Chicago Botanic Garden in Glencoe, Illinois, there is an "enabling garden" where veterans, mental health patients and nursing home residents, among others, come to reduce the tension in their lives (and bodies) by spending a little time with nature at a place that is featured just for them. Part of the reason the Botanic Garden hosts this area is because gardening has been proven to be a therapy for social, physical, and psychological benefits. Kudos to the CBS!
Apply the Square Foot Gardening Method
Inch By Inch, Row by Row
One popular type of raised bed gardening is square foot gardening. This is a very structured approach to creating a raised bed, created by Mel Bartholomew, an engineer-turned-gardener. The garden is laid out in squares, approximately one square foot in length, with no limit to the size. The idea is that so many of a given type of plant will do well when intensively gardened, therefore you plant a given number in each square. It is growing in popularity, especially in the revived city space gardens, but also for backyard gardeners who have limited space or just want to plant a select number of vegetables.
With a raised bed garden, you can get more from your garden with less work and pain from you, a winning proposition all around. Plus, they are great for growing flowers as well!