Benefits of Raised Bed Gardening

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Like any garden method, there are both pros and cons. However there are many benefits of raised bed gardening. Over the years, this has become one of my favorite ways to garden for numerous reasons.

And in this post, I’m going to highlight some of the reasons why I enjoy using raised beds in the garden.

Mary cutting herbs in raised beds.

Garden Challenges

With the ups and downs that the entire world has faced over the last couple of years, many are interested in growing their own food at home. And with an uncertain future, I encourage many to start to grow more of their own food as they’re able to.

Related: Victory Gardening

I know many of you are looking for new ways of gardening to fit your needs or your available space at home. So, I’m sharing a few of the things I’ve learned in using raised beds in the garden.

Currently we are converting an old cattle pasture into a larger garden in our new home. It takes some time to fully develop a garden, years in fact.

The last couple of years, we have tested out a few different gardening methods at this new house. And by far, raised bed gardening has been the best solution for our needs.

The first summer at this new house, we had severe weather hit the garden and wiped out all of my new plant starts. So, I replanted the garden and another storm came through, this time brought what I believe was a small tornado which destroyed my beloved greenhouse that my husband built for me.

Needless to say, after these storms, I basically gave up on the garden that year.

“A garden is a grand teacher. It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above all it teaches entire trust.”

Gertrude Jekyll

Raised Bed Gardening

In the home gardens at our previous home, I had much success with growing directly in the ground. And here at the new house, I also have many varieties of plants directly sown into our larger garden beds.

However, raised beds have become my favorite method for most of the kitchen garden space. There are numerous reasons why they work well for us and why you might want to consider adding them to your home garden.

One huge benefit is that it has made the conversion of this old pasture into a garden a bit more easier to maintain.

Another resource that we’ve been learning a lot from in gardening is Charles Dowding. He is an expert in soil maintenance and no dig gardening. This method has helped our garden spaces thrive and so I am in the process of fully converting the entire garden into a no dig space.

adding cardboard as a weed barrier to the garden.
Using cardboard in the garden as a weed barrier.

We live in an area of Nebraska known as the Sandhills. This means that our soil is often sandy and we also have clay soil. These types are soil are not ideal for gardening and so we’ve had to learn different ways to amend the soil.

As we have been using the no dig garden method along with raised beds, our garden has been the best yet.

It is also important to me to keep our garden beds and structures as sustainably as possible. So this means that I will source the materials from places and repurpose them to work for my garden.

I have beds made of old untreated scrap wood, old cattle waterers and feeders. If you get creative, you’ll be able to find a ton of options for starting raised beds frugally.

Favorite benefits of raised beds

I believe that raised garden beds just look better than an ordinary old garden plot. And we have these too, but the raised garden beds are my favorite!

Besides the ascetically pleasing nature, raised beds are much easier to maintain. Weed control is so much more easier too!

They are also easier on my back when I’m in the garden. As I’m getting older and my back definitely isn’t what it used to be after having 4 babies, this has helped me by sitting and reaching into the beds.

These beds are also better for keeping the little critters out of the garden. If you have trouble with small critters like bunnies, raised beds helps keep them away.

I also like to use this garden netting as a barrier to keep the insects away from the more delicate plants. With a raised garden bed, it is easy to drape over the plants and clip over the edges with a clamp.

Here’s a bit of a highlight of the top benefits of growing in a raised bed:

  • easier on the back
  • helps keep out critters
  • and easier to keep insects out with simple netting and staking
  • a little more control of the soil and amendments
  • more ascetically pleasing
  • fewer weeds and easier to maintain
vertical gardening in a raised garden bed.

Growing vertically in a raised bed

If you’re low on space, consider growing vertically in the garden. This also works well in raised beds too. I like to use old cattle panels and t posts to stake them in the bed.

They are great for growing things like garden peas, snap peas, or snow peas.

Green beans, cucamelons, cucumbers, and other climbing beans are great options to grow vertically.

You could even use this method for growing your tomatoes.

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