Love the idea of a backyard garden but feel you don’t have enough room to dig one out on your small plot? Or, maybe you have a huge yard but worry about your (lack of) gardening skills? A raised garden bed may deliver an ideal solution. Though certainly not a new concept, raised garden beds (aka garden boxes) have been steadily gaining popularity amongst both rural and urban homeowners for a multitude of reasons, making it a viable alternative to traditional patches.
A modern raised planting yields several benefits, including:
Planting in your yard means you are at the mercy of your existing soil composition. Not with a raised bed. You’ll have the opportunity to carefully pick the right soil mix for whatever you’re planting without going through a soil amendment treatment.
Getting air to your garden’s root system is vital for success. A garden bed offers an ideal structure to promote adequate aeration during the planting phase. Additionally, these boxes minimize the risk of soil compaction to ensure your plants get the air they need throughout the entire growing season.
Heavy rains can quickly flood conventional backyard plantings. Excessive water and pooling can suffocate plants and eventually lead to fungus and bacteria. A raised bed delivers sound drainage to help your produce and flowers receive the right amount of moisture without becoming overly wet.
Unwanted growth and vegetation can quickly kill things planted directly in the soil, forcing many of us to assume we are cursed with a “black thumb.” Weeds are rarely an issue with a garden box since the entire unit is self-contained – you may just be surprised at how many gardening skills you have when you aren’t constantly fighting weeds!
The loose soil in a box promotes the healthy spread of your garden’s root systems. This well-developed root system grounds your plantings, allowing them to soak up the critical nutrients and moisture they need to thrive.
Your garden box not only lets your plants roots run deep, but it also prevents tree roots from extending into your patches, robbing your veggies of the nutrient-enriched soil.
Pests are a major concern for traditional vegetable patches. An insect or rodent infestation can devour your entire crop. Garden boxes often prove a significant deterrent to the creepy crawlers lurking throughout your property.
Lack of sun or too much shade can have a negative impact on a backyard garden. Not a problem with a raised bed. If you notice that your plants aren’t thriving, simply pick up the box and move it to a more desirable location in your yard.
Traditional gardening can’t start until the spring thaw and generally ends with the first frost. Garden boxes can be started earlier in the season, allowing your edibles an opportunity for a healthy head start. Additionally, adding hoop covers to your raised bed grants you a chance to extend the season for vegetables that require a little longer time before harvest.
The biggest reason to invest in a raised garden? A better harvest. Planting your edibles close together in ideal growing conditions means that many gardeners enjoy a more fruitful final supply.