7 Benefits Of Raised-Bed Gardening
It's gardening season! Experienced gardeners are waiting in anticipation of the last frost date, and new gardeners are getting a start on putting it together. If you created a garden last year, you can really make that patch of plants sing and curate your ideal plot. However, first-time gardeners may need some advice on how to get started. One option is to build a garden in a raised bed. Here are 7 benefits of gardening in a raised bed.
In urban areas, you find a lot of raised bed gardens because the gardener can control what goes in the soil. That way, you can avoid exposing your plants to pollution that may be the ground. In addition, every flower and plant has different needs for sunlight, soil, and water. By having control over the soil, you can plant exactly what you want rather than having a garden that's dictated by the soil that is already there.
If you opt for a raised garden with borders and chicken wire in the base, you are putting up a defense against certain pests. Rodents love to burrow. Gophers and chipmunks are the most common culprits, and, while they are cute, they can destroy gardens. They make meals out of the roots of plants, as well as create tunnel systems and nests to block plants from properly taking root. With a border and chicken wire, rodents can't tunnel through to your garden soil.
Because you're putting in your own soil rather than using the soil in the ground, your soil will have little to no weeds in it. This will save you time on your hands and knees trying to dig out weeds to make room for your more precious plants.
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Because raised beds are not directly in the ground, they don't feel the same degree of cold a ground garden bed does. They warm up in the spring earlier (cold ground is hard ground) making it easier to get your beds started. They also stay warmer longer in the fall making it a longer growing season for some plants and flowers.
Raised beds save your soil from both compaction and erosion. Its clearly marked borders prevent people from walking where you're growing. Walking in a garden bed leads to dense soil that can make it hard for roots to breathe and take in nutrients necessary to thrive. In addition, raised beds with borders also prevent wind and water from washing away nutrient-rich soil.
With raised beds, you can control water drainage. By creating a drainage system or adding rocks in the bottom of your raised beds, you're preventing problems caused by excess water, like root rot. This works for moderate to moist climates, but for dry climates like New Mexico or Texas, raised beds tend to dry out faster than ground beds.
Raised beds allow you to design a garden so you can navigate it easily and without having to put on men's clothing to protect you from getting dirty. You can plan your beds so you have enough space to rest your garden tools without the danger of compacting you soil, as well as be able to water your plants with control. If you can walk around your plants with minimal destruction, you can water adequately and evenly.