Thursday, August 1, 2013

Raised Garden Beds

Why choose raised beds?

Raised Garden Bed
Using raised beds, planted intensively can produce 4-6 times the amount of yield than normal row planting. The size of the area you need using raised beds is greatly reduced. By cutting down on the wasted space between rows you can save as much as 70%.

Managing your beds also takes less time, the compact space makes it easy to water, weed and fertilize. Adding fertilizer to this compact space saves dollars instead of spreading it throughout a row garden.

Plants that like to spread and take over are far easier to keep confined to their designated space. You can have lawn or various groundcovers that can add color and or aroma to your space. Try planted creeping pennyroyal between your beds to help keep out bugs. As you walk on it, you will enjoy the refreshing aroma and flies and mosquitoes will even stay away from the area!

You may wish to have raised beds closing off the entire perimeter of your garden space. The perimeter beds can be planted with plants and herbs that repel insects, such as Wormwood, Mugwort, Pennyroyal, Garlic, Marigolds, Pyrethrin, Hyssop, Rosemary, Sage, Thyme, Nasturtiums, Catnip, Chives, Feverfew, Marigolds, and Rue.

How much work?

Digging the soil to create a raised bed will prepare the beds for several gardening years. The soil does not get compacted down from being stepped on so maintaining the soil is much easier. The more soil builders you add the easier the soil is to work. Roots crops especially benefit from raised beds, as they need non compacted soil to reach full growth potential. If you have a row garden now, start converting to raised beds, a couple a year. Try planting garlic or onions first and you'll be converted forever to raised beds with the size difference. With the savings in money, time and space, what are you waiting for?

A Simple Plan with Raised Beds Including Border of Raised Beds

Garden plan with raised beds

Steps to Creating A Raised Garden Bed:

  1. Design your beds as long as is practical but beds should not be more than 5' wide. You want the center easy to reach from either side. Now your ready to mark off your bed, use a simple 4 corner post and your garden string to define the area. Lightly moisten the soil, remove any top vegetation and add a 3" layer of compost into the top 1' of soil. dig a trench at one end of your bed about the width and depth of your shovel. Remove this soil and place in a wheelbarrow to move later to opposite end of the bed.

  2. Loosen the underlying soil in the trench with a spading fork to 12" deep. Try not to mix the lower soil with the topsoil.

  3. Dig a second trench the same as the first. Shovel this soil into the first trench you made. Loosen the next set of subsoil you have exposed and continue trenching and loosening until you reach the end of your bed.

  4. When the last trench is dug and its subsoil loosened, fill it with the remaining soil from your wheelbarrow.

  5. Rake the top of the bed smooth and flat. shape the bed so that the sides slope gently outward at the base. If desired, box the perimeter of the bed using 2x10 lumber fastened with galvanized nails. 

That's it! Plant your seeds and enjoy the new look and ease of your garden!


  • Healthy garden soil: composting, mulching, and layered gardens
  • Natural bug sprays:  how to make your own, safe and effective insect repellents & garden sprays
  • All about tomatoes:   from starting plants from seeds to planting out, insect pests, harvesting & more
  • Companion Planting:  chart of plants which repel insects and naturally enhance the growth and flavour of neighbouring plants.

PRODUCTS:  click on product name for more details and pricing.

Frame It All Curved Design Raised Gardens

Every conceivable garden design is now achievable with 'Frame It All' Eco-friendly,Curved Composite Wood Grain Timbers that will never splinter or rot. Joined together with Stacking Joints and Curved Timbers create elegant, undulating garden borders, circles around flower beds and trees. Use them to assemble multi-level, curvy raised gardens.

Frame It All Raised Garden Beds

Easy to install raised garden beds come pre-manufactured.  You simply put them in place, fill with soil, and plant.

Raised Grow Bedicon

No digging and little weeding required; just lots of delicious homegrown food! The 3' x 6' Grow Bed gives you twice as much growing space, and the Mini Bed is perfect for narrow areas along a foundation or walkway. All sizes assemble quickly and have a generous 10" depth.

Elevated Cedar Raised Bedicon

Set up one or more of these rectangular elevated beds around the edge of your patio to add privacy, or arrange several along a perimeter to create a garden "room". Like our other cedar raised beds, the sides are held in place with our sleek and sturdy aluminum corners. There's a false floor made from marine-grade plywood set 10" down from the top so there's plenty of root space for vegetables and flowers. Floor has holes for drainage; vents in the sides allow air to circulate and excess moisture to evaporate.

Raised Bed Snip-n-Drip Soaker Systemicon

Apply water just where you want it — and not where you don't. With the Snip-n-Drip Raised Bed Soaker System you can easily create a convenient and streamlined watering system for your raised beds. No special tools required — just use scissors to cut the hoses to the sizes you need. Snap the fittings in place and you're ready to water. The weeping action of soaker hoses delivers water right to the roots, with minimal loss due to evaporation or runoff. Includes 25' of 1/2" soaker hose, 4' of 1/2" garden hose, one faucet adapter, two quick-connect angle couplers, one soaker hose adapter and one end plug. We recommend using our Easy-Out Earth Staples, sold separately, to hold soaker hoses in place.

Decorative Raised Bed Cornersicon

Create a snazzy new raised bed or retrofit an existing one with these decorative and versatile corner brackets. The clever design lets you create beds with 1-1/2" to 2" thick lumber. The pointed bottom can be pushed into the soil to accommodate different heights of lumber and also adds stability. You can make the bed any size you like because you supply the lumber. Deco Raised Bed Corners are also perfect for shoring up old raised beds.

In-Line Connectors for Raised Bedsicon

For raised beds that won't bow out at the sides, use 4-foot planks and anchor them with our reinforcing In-Line Connectors, which come in sets of two. Use with standard lumber. Made in Vermont by Gardener's Supply.

Raised Bed with Cold Frameicon

This beautiful elevated bed includes a matching cold frame top to protect plants from harsh weather, making it perfect for starting seeds, hardening off transplants, and growing greens and other cool-season crops. The 2' x 8' elevated bed is easy to plant, tend and harvest without kneeling or bending. There's a false floor made from marine-grade plywood set 10" down from the top so there's plenty of root space for vegetables and flowers. Floor has holes for drainage; vents in the sides allow air to circulate and excess moisture to evaporate. The cold frame top is made with polycarbonate panels that diffuse light so plants don't "cook," and there are adjustable aluminum braces to hold panels at various intervals for ventilation.

Elevated Grow Sheltericon

A self-contained growing system that’s easy to tend and protects plants from chill, wind, heavy rain, insects, birds and animal pests — including deer, dogs and cats. We started with our popular, Vermont-made, 4' x 4' Elevated Cedar Raised Bed. Then we added a powder-coated steel frame and two-part cover that’s tall enough for big crops like tomatoes. The reinforced PVC outer cover protects plants from chill. Large zippered openings reveal the insect netting underneath and let you adjust ventilation. There are zippered openings in the netting, too, for easy access to plants and to allow pollinating insects to reach plants.

Frame It All - Simple Modular Gardens

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