Raised bed gardening is not a fundamentally new concept. In fact, it has been around for quite some time, as gardeners have discovered the convenience and options it provides. Modern gardens are filled with this feature, and many people are now focusing their landscape design.
Raised beds are easy to build, even if you are not expert on the matter. You can choose from a variety of materials, such as bricks, concrete blocks or timber. With ready-to-assemble kits available on the market, there is nothing to worry about. If you are still having second thoughts, consider all the benefits:
Drainage – even during heavy rains, raised garden beds offer excellent drainage. There is a good reason why they are so preferred in tropical areas with heavy rainfall. As the soil in them has loose texture, water seeps merely inside, eliminating fast runoff, which in other cases would carry away soil. Since water gets absorbed into the lower areas of the bed, you needn’t worry about waterlogging.
Aeration – digging up the ground and providing support to the sides with a frame is a lovely traditional way of building these beds. No matter you put in the frames as a soil solution is going to have a loose structure. This, in turn, is ideal for plants, since it provides rich growing media and superb air circulation for the roots. Proper aeration is essential for preserving microbial population and soil health. The main benefit is that there is less risk of soil compaction since there will be no trampling of the soil around plants. And since water is draining quickly, the danger of soil compaction due to flooding is minimal.
Weed control – there are a lot of dormant weed seeds lying on the ground. During the process of deep cultivation, many of them will be exposed and thus grow into persistent weeds. With raised beds, you have the option of filling in soil that is mostly free of weed seeds. Even if they do grow, it will be easy to remove them.
Build on existing turf – starting a new vegetable patch on the ground usually means digging up turf and clearing the sod. However, raised beds can be built on already existing turf, thus saving you the need to dig up.
Easy pest control – a lot of pests find their way to vegetable patches by crawling. These will undoubtedly be deterred by the solid frames of a raised bed. You can take your anti-pest measures one step further and place a plastic liner at the bottom of the these bed. If pests are already present, it is easier to pick them off in raised beds, due to the increased accessibility.
Extended growing season – raised beds thaw much earlier in spring, allowing for earlier transplanting. You can further give your plants a head start by adding metal pipe brackets to frames along with hoop covers.
As you can see, raised beds present a wonderful addition to your garden, with multiple benefits. It is up to you to take full advantage of them.
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