Raised bed gardening has many benefits over traditional style gardening in rows, the following four reasons cover some of the most common reasons people switch to raised bed gardening.
1. Soil Management:
Raised beds sit above the ground and can be thought of as a very large container that holds multiple plants. because the raised beds sit on top of the ground, raised beds are ideal for people who do not have the best quality dirt around their property as you will have to add soil to them. This allows you to start your garden with a high quality soil mix right off the bat. Make sure that you’re soil has good water retention and has lots of compost from at least three different sources. Using multiple sources makes sure that you’re soil has all of the needed nutrients, because if you concentrate on one source it may be lacking.
2. Cold climate:
If you live in a colder climate, raised beds may definitely be the way you want to go. Because they sit above the ground, they heat up earlier then traditional gardens which allows you to start planting earlier as well. This gives you a head start on the growing season which in some area’s could mean a successful crop or not.
3. Weed Control:
Since raised beds are raised off of the ground, it is harder for seeds as well as weed runners to get inside your boxes (especially if you add a bottom to the box). This makes raised beds easier to weed, since there are less weeds to pull. Raised beds are also higher up off the ground so you don’t need to bed as far. If you have a bad back or cannot bend fully, a good idea is to put your garden on a stand, so it is at standing height. No Bending at all!! Because you are using a high quality soil in your garden, you will find you have less weeds to pull, since weeds usually prefer a not so perfect environment to grow in.
4. Reduce the Compaction of Soil
When you build your raised beds, make sure that you can reach all parts of the garden from outside of it. This means you will never have to step or lean on your soil. This reduces the compaction of the soil which gives your plants an easier environment to grow in. You want to avoid compact soil because when compacted less water can get into and then drain from the soil. Aeration is another factor that needs to be considered, as your plant roots need to exert more force to expand if the soil does not have enough aeration.
Organic gardening with raised beds is a great way to get started gardening, or if you are an experienced gardener, raised beds make for a great addition to your current gardens. I have been vegetable gardening with raised beds since I started, and know of a few gardeners that have switched completely over to raised beds from their traditional plots. When I asked them if they would go back they said definitely not!