Raising the Standard of Raised Beds - Part 1

*By Shaun Mayfield

Raised garden beds is a particular method of garden design that can create a lot of interest and beauty, or simply reduce other issues you may be experiencing. So perhaps from one of the several reasons you will read below, you will consider adding elegance through raised beds in your garden today.

Some of the things that would warrant someone needing to add raised beds may be due to the types of plants one is growing; like citrus, cacti, succulents, blueberries, and other tropical/subtropical plants, they typically require different soil types. We can achieve their soil needs much easier when they are in raised beds or decorative pots. When discussing soil structure, a major consideration would be your current soil conditions. Having lived in the desert Southwest in the Phoenix, AZ area and now currently in the North Texas area, both of these areas are prone to high clay content which requires a lot of extra work to get the soil conditions great. Some people will build raised beds simply to overcome the native or unproductive soil beneath since you have the ability to built the perfect soil blend in the bed to provide your plants everything they need.

Another reason a raised bed might be preferred (or even a necessity) is if you live in a rental property and are not allowed to build in-ground garden beds. You could build a raised bed and simply remove it when you leave. Perhaps you do not have yard space and are limited to growing on concrete. Have you thought about building a raised bed on top of the concrete pad or utilizing pots and containers?

And as in real estate, location, location, location is everything. With a raised bed you are able to place it anywhere you want within your means. They could easily be placed in precise microclimates, put on wheels, and rolled around on a concrete patio, on balconies, or even rooftops. Your raised beds could even be integrated as a part of the natural landscape, like on the corners of patios which can increase seating space for guests at your next party, or they could be the edging of your garden or the central focal point of it.

Of course, this level of elegance allows one to explore all the different options of the type of materials like wood, stone, metal, or other decorative materials, whether new or up-cycled. The elegance is only limited by your imagination. However, one thing to keep in mind for your design, is that the location of your plants may need to be in an area protected from deer, rabbits, and even children in order to thrive which raised beds can help with.

Check back next week to learn more about different design elements that you should consider when building your elegant raised bed garden.

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* You can find out more about Shaun Mayfield at bluesky.agriscaping.com .