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Raised Bed Gardening

Updated on August 17, 2017

Gardening With Raised Beds

Raised beds gardening can be an important alternative for those with soil or climate conditions that aren't conducive to growing a healthy garden.

Living in the Pacific NW our growing season is relatively short. Planting a raised garden would help address that fact and turn it to our advantage.

Raised garden beds come in all shapes and sizes and you get to decide which type suites your needs. There is no reason you can't take some of this information and develop your own style of raised beds.

I will share some of the advantages of raised bed gardening in this article and some resources for more information.

Image Courtesy Of Dan Malec

Raised Garden Beds On Legs
Raised Garden Beds On Legs

Some Advantages Of Raised Bed Gardening

Raised Beds Gardening

Whether your raised garden beds consist of contained areas or mounds of dirt, there are distinct advantages to this method. Soil improvement, better drainage, and the ability to plant earlier in the growing season are just a few of the advantages.

If you do plant in contained areas, you will probably have even more of an advantage in the end. There is less chance of soil erosion in contained beds but gardening on mounds or slight hills of dirt can work as well.

As stated earlier, where I live, we usually cannot plant until late June. If we plant in raised beds, the planting ground would warm up much earlier and make for a longer growing season.

Raised bed gardening also means less chance of weeds since you can put barriers between the bottom of the ground and the dirt placed on top for planting. The weeds and grass that do take root can be easier to remove and keep in check, as the dirt is not as tightly packed as in traditional gardening.

I really like the idea that you can build your raised garden to any height so that there is less bending and stooping while tending the garden. It would be much easier on the back and joints which I am all for. If you plan properly, you can even make your beds wheelchair accessible.

Lastly, if you raise your bed high enough, it can be a great deterrent for dogs and burrowing rodents that may otherwise harm your garden.

Here is a great article that talks about how the raised gardening beds in the above image were constructed.

Raised Beds Gardening

Raised Beds Gardening
Raised Beds Gardening

What Can You Grow In Your Raised Beds?

Raised Beds Gardening Planting Ideas

Image Above Courtesy Of Popular Mechanics

You can grow pretty much any type of plant in a raised garden bed as you could in the ground or in containers. The one consideration you need to keep in mind is planting and growing space.

Many squash plants for instance need a lot of space to spread out and grow. Our zucchini plants need about three feet on either side to sprawl according to the seed packets. Unless you have a lot of raised bed space, you might want to consider planting your squash in other areas of the yard.

You will need to take into consideration placement for your different plants so that the tall and climbing plants can have the support they need and room to grow vertically without over shadowing smaller plants.

You can plant vegetables, herbs, flowers or a combination of all of these plants in one bed. Companion planting would be great for raised beds gardening.

As long as your plants have the appropriate amount of sunlight and your raised garden beds are well drained, the sky is the limit as to exactly what you can plant in your raised beds.

Lasagna Gardening, by Patricia Lanza - Another Way to Raised Beds Gardening

If you would like to read more about the Lasagna Gardening style, you can read my Lasagna Gardening Method article. I share more tips and photos to help you understand how you can start your own Lasagna Garden.

Layered Compost Pile
Layered Compost Pile

Make Health Food For Your Soil

Make Your Own Compost Soil For Your Raised Beds

The site offers many articles that can help with your gardening projects. Here is an excerpt that is used with permission -

"Fall is high season for making compost, the finest of all foods to feed your raised beds gardens.

Compost-worthy materials abound this time of year, so all you must do to make a batch is to pile up dead or dying plants, cool-season weeds, fruit and vegetable waste from your kitchen, and maybe some shredded leaves.

Will such a simple project really make a difference in the performance of your veggies next year? You bet it will!..."

Read the rest of this article and check out more gardening posts while there.

image and article excerpt from

How To Build Raised Beds Gardens

Here are several How-To videos to help get you started building your own raised garden beds. Click any video for larger view and to watch!

Walks you through building a raised garden bed.

Building a raised bed box to use for your garden.

A simple raised garden bed.

Building a raised garden bed out of fir or redwood, and cedar

Repurposing and recycling to build raised bed gardens for free or very inexpensively

Building a raised bed

Growing food in your raised bed.

Things to consider when building your raised bed garden.

Creating An Edge For Mowing - For Your Raised Beds Garden

A Mowing Edge For A Raised Bed Garden
A Mowing Edge For A Raised Bed Garden

I like the look of this mowing edge for a raised bed garden in the photo above! Not sure if I will do it or not but I thought I would share this link here in case there are others that want to go that extra step with their garden.

Visit the article on Home and Garden TV about building a raised bed vegetable garden to see more photos and get the instructions. Be sure to visit the second page for the whole article.

Square Foot Gardening 101 - A Very Popular Raised Bed Style

These ladies take you through the steps of square foot gardening on this Youtube video.

More Gardening Articles by Me

Click any of the article links below for more gardening research and information.

Fairy Houses and Plants in Your Fairy Garden
Lately my thoughts are turning to springtime and I am feeling the pull to create a Fairy Garden. In my research, I discovered some adorable and lovely photos...

Container Vegetable Gardening
If you have been longing for a vegetable garden but just don't have the space, you may want to consider Container Vegetable Gardening. Growing vegetables in...

Worm Farm Composting - Making Organic Compost
Have you ever wondered how to do worm farm composting? It can be a very rewarding and organic way to add vital nutrients to your garden and houseplants plus ...

There's A Peacock In My Garden!
It's spring here in the Pacific NW, USA and time to plant our gardens and decorate them with garden statues and garden ornaments. My wonderful son and daugh...

9 Reasons For Growing Your Own Vegetables
Have you been thinking about growing your own vegetables but just aren't quiet there yet? You may be pleasantly surprised to find that it is easier than you...

Will You Be Using Raised Beds For Your Gardens This Year?

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    • ItayaLightbourne profile imageAUTHOR

      Itaya Lightbourne 

      5 years ago from Topeka, KS

      @John Dyhouse: I love using containers myself! I don't see why containers wouldn't count as raised beds. They work for me. :)

    • John Dyhouse profile image

      John Dyhouse 

      5 years ago from UK

      To be absolutely brutal I started using containers because of a plague of cats. The neighbours simply let their pets roam and I am or was the only person who dug the garden regularly for veggies, etc. I gave up and invested in containers.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I like the idea on raised beds for your gardens. Great work and I will use raised beds for my gardens.

    • Holly22 profile image

      Christine and Peter Broster 

      6 years ago from Tywyn Wales UK

      Yes, I will for sure.

    • Fox Music profile image

      Fox Music 

      6 years ago

      Another Enjoyable Lens "Raised Beds Gardening" full of valuable information !!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I certainly doing raised beds this year. Thanks for the info

    • Gypzeerose profile image

      Rose Jones 

      6 years ago

      You have done such a nice job on this important topic. I am going to try the lasagna gardening if it is easy on my back! Pinned to my "How does Your Garden Grow" board, out by digg and blessed.

    • WindyWintersHubs profile image


      6 years ago from Vancouver Island, BC

      We have a strawberry patch in a raised bed. Would love to add a few smaller ones for vegetables. The redesign and relocate would be ideal as we always seem to be moving something around in the yard. Thanks for these great ideas. Blessed!

    • Judith Nazarewicz profile image

      Judith Nazarewicz 

      6 years ago from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

      Awesome lens!

    • onyesvic profile image


      6 years ago

      Great work

    • tonybonura profile image

      Tony Bonura 

      6 years ago from Tickfaw, Louisiana

      I don't think that I will be using raised beds myself, but I still think it is a great idea. Thanks for sharing.


    • kristalulabelle profile image


      6 years ago from Wisconsin

      I loved all of the great pictures and the benefits of raised bed gardening. Great read!

    • RyanBlock profile image


      6 years ago

      Liked the lens, another great thing about an elevated raised bed is it is accessible to those people with bad backs or disabilities.

    • Allison Whitehead profile image

      Allison Whitehead 

      6 years ago

      Lovely lens. I like the mowing edge for the raised bed too.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I still have a regular garden in the ground, but I would love to do some raised beds for flowers. I love the brick around the beds, it would definitely cut down on trimming.

    • senditondown profile image


      7 years ago from US

      We have in the past, but not this year. However, my back really enjoys it when the plants are off the ground!

    • jcairney profile image


      7 years ago

      Raised beds make any garden look great. Really good to work with too...saves a lot of bending. Well done for a great lens.

    • Judy Filarecki profile image

      Judy Filarecki 

      7 years ago from SW Arizona and Northern New York

      Best way to go for one or two people.

    • junecampbell profile image

      June Campbell 

      7 years ago from North Vancouver, BC, Canada

      A friend let me use a raised bed garden in her yard last year because I do not have a garden. It was a lot of fun.

    • DIY Mary profile image

      DIY Mary 

      7 years ago

      The raised gardening kits look like they'd be fun to try.

    • cajkovska lm profile image

      cajkovska lm 

      7 years ago

      Nice idea... maybe I will try using it next year.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Very cool, indeed!

    • lesliesinclair profile image


      7 years ago

      You're really smart to share that square foot gardening idea. Raised beds is the only way to go.

    • Brandi Bush profile image


      7 years ago from Maryland

      I had to stop back by as I'm planning on doing my raised beds sometime next week. Great tips you have here! Hope you had a lovely Easter! :)

    • Lee Hansen profile image

      Lee Hansen 

      7 years ago from Vermont

      I have two big raised box/raised bed gardens in my former home and one ground level raised bed hoop house at my new home. This season my daughter and I will be building a complete raised bed garden system in the back yard. It will be lots of fun and we get organic veggies for almost free.

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 

      7 years ago from Colorado

      This was a great introduction to raised bed gardening. I learned several new techniques that I can use immediately. I like the strategy of introducing the seedlings to the outdoors over several days. I've never tried a square foot matrix before but I appreciate the ease demonstrated here. Thank you for all of this food for thought. Valuable information, for sure.

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image

      William Leverne Smith 

      7 years ago from Hollister, MO

      This is something I really do want to do. Thanks for the info! ;-)

    • Einar A profile image

      Einar A 

      7 years ago

      Very informative article! I have used raised beds in the past and had a lot of success with them.

    • kindoak profile image


      7 years ago

      This is a lens to my liking! Spring is coming, time to plant the seeds!

    • orange3 lm profile image

      orange3 lm 

      7 years ago

      I like to use my raised bed to contain things like strawberries and anything else that can easily take over my garden area. Great ideas here...thanks.

    • suzy-t profile image


      7 years ago

      So many benefits to raised beds...Nice and neat...good drainage...Thanks for sharing some of your ideas here.

    • flicker lm profile image

      flicker lm 

      7 years ago

      I have both raised bed and "flat ground" in my garden. The raised beds seem to work better for some veggies and the flat ground for others. Enjoyed your lens!

    • Rosaquid profile image


      7 years ago

      I'm getting jazzed for the coming season! Thanks for the info.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Enjoyed reading this, this is an item for my wife and I to do this spring! *blessed*

    • Blkeeslar profile image

      Billie Keeslar 

      7 years ago from Mississippi

      Last year was my first year to garden - I did tomato plants and herbs in containers. Yesterday I was at Sams and they had raised garden kits - I bought one cannot wait to get started. I am so glad I started my compost.

    • tvyps profile image

      Teri Villars 

      7 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      I love this kind of stuff. I wish I lived in a more temperate climate so I could do these. The second you plant something here in Phoenix, the sun roasts it away! Squid Angel blessed!

    • TheArtLibrarian profile image


      7 years ago

      Yes, I do already. Nice lens -- very thorough! Thanks.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Raised bed gardens do make gardening easier, and the plants love them. Great ideas for everyone interested, and a good resources. :)

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      thanks for sharing

    • Brandi Bush profile image


      7 years ago from Maryland

      I'm doing raised beds this year...I can't wait to lay them out! :)

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      What a great idea thanks for sharing the info. It would be a great idea for an apartment

    • annleecakes profile image

      Trulee Ann 

      7 years ago from Arkansas City, Kansas


      Truly enjoyed you interesting lens sharing.

      I use and have many raised gardens in my Water Fountain garden areas.


    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Great lens lot of info for growing vegetables thanks, I have just started out in growing

    • Wbisbill LM profile image

      Barbara Isbill 

      7 years ago from New Market Tn 37820

      Thumbs up on another great lens. This topic interests me, as we love gardening.

      P.S. Thanks for visiting my Christmas Traditions lens.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I need to try again with gradening I am so bad

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I enjoyed learning about raised bed gardening. Very good information which will come in handy for me too.


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