If you’re looking for a way to improve your lawn and grow some new plants, a raised garden bed is a great idea. These provide a space for you to grow whatever you want.
They are also simple to assemble and easy to maintain. This article will not only walk you through what a raised garden bed is but also what you should put on the bottom of your raised garden bed and what you can plant in it.
Use a trellis in your raised garden bed for your cucumbers and climbing pole beans!
What Is A Raised Garden Bed?
A raised garden bed is an area for growing plants that is separate and elevated above the rest of a lawn. It is typically a rectangular set of planks or walls creating a plot raised anywhere from several inches to a foot above the ground.
They are filled with layers of organic material, a semi-solid layer for drainage and to block weeds, and a larger layer of soil on top.
One of the benefits of raised garden beds is their separation from the rest of a lawn. This makes them a great area to grow flowers and plants, keeping them safe from the dangers of a regular lawn.
You can also use a raised garden bed to get some growing space if you don’t have much lawn space, or if there’s no soil at all.
Raised garden beds also benefit from great functionality that makes them great for planting while being easy to maintain.
The different layers all serve their own purpose that benefits anything you’re growing. The layer of organic material gives nutrients to the soil and absorbs water.
The semi-solid layer helps manage drainage and prevents weeds from growing up from below. The soil will make up the bulk of the material in the bed and will be where you’ll be able to plant.
Construct your raised wooden beds by using a wooden table saw. This will greatly speed up your working time, utilizing your time efficiently and effectively!
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What Should I Put On The Bottom?
Raised garden beds follow a similar layered structure. Each layer serves a purpose and helps optimize your bed for growing a wide variety of plants.
The first layer of your raised bed should be made up of grass cuttings and plant waste, or some other form of organic matter. As this breaks down it will give the soil and roots of plants nutrients, as well as absorbing excess water that feeds down.
After this should be a semi-solid layer. Materials such as cardboard, newspaper, or landscape fibre create a barrier that prevents pests and weeds from coming up from below, while also protecting the roots growing down.
The rest of your raised bed should be filled with a soil mix. This makes up the bulk of your raised bed and will be where you can plant whatever you want in your garden bed. The soil mix will provide nutrients and good growing conditions for your plants.
The rough proportions of this soil mix should be 60% topsoil, 30% compost, 10% potting soil or perlite/vermiculite. The compost will give the soil more nutrients, and the potting soil or vermiculite will bolster the soil’s conditions for growing plants.
You can also change this mix depending on what plants you want to grow, such as adding sand into the soil mix for root vegetables, or acid soil for flowers that need a more acidic environment to grow. Feel free to adjust the soil mix to match your needs.
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What Can I Grow In My Raised Garden Bed?
Now that you’ve created the perfect raised garden bed, the only thing left to do is fill it! You can grow a wide variety of different plants in your raised garden bed. Depending on how you set it up, you may only want to grow one thing at a time, or multiple things at once.
When choosing vegetable and flowering seeds, you want to make sure you purchase high quality organic, Non-GMO, open-pollinated seeds!
Raised garden beds are perfect for growing flowers, especially if you don’t have much lawn space. It is also great for protecting flowers from damage, such as from pets or pests.
If you want to grow your own food, a raised garden bed is ideal for growing vegetables year-round. You can even build several raised garden beds to cycle through and grow different types of veg.
Depending on what vegetables you’re interested in growing, you may need to use a specific type of soil. Bear this in mind while choosing, as some of your vegetables may need different conditions to grow.
You can also use your raised garden bed to grow fruit. Fruit plants can flourish in raised beds, and you can even plant small fruit trees if you have the space! This will vary based on your climate, as many fruits need sunnier weather to grow.
However, there are still plenty of fruits that can grow in colder climates, such as apples and pears.
Raised garden beds are perfect for any type of plant as long as you provide the right conditions for it. If you make sure that there is enough space and the proper nutrients in the soil, any plant can flourish.
When filling your raised garden bed, it’s important to remember that these are only recommendations, and you can alter aspects of the bed to suit your needs. While you will still need to use the same layered structure of organic matter, a semi-solid layer, and a soil mix, don’t hesitate to switch it up depending on what you want to use your garden bed for.
Instead of using dead plants or grass cuttings for the organic layer, you can use a compost pile. If you want to use a different material for the solid layer you can use stone slabs or a layer of plastic (just be aware that materials like these will take longer to break down but prevent water from draining as effectively).
And as mentioned previously, you can change what you include in the soil mix to suit different flowers and vegetables.
With the freedom and functionality a raised garden bed gives you, they are a great addition to any garden.