Raised Garden Beds Benefits
Modern day homesteading and the move to a more off grid basic lifestyle brought a new interest into own food cultivation.
Even city dwellers took up an interest in growing their own vegetables. Raised garden beds and even containers are becoming increasingly popular as the solution to growing your own organic vegetables.
There are numerous benefits of raised garden beds and / or container gardening.
10 Benefits of raised garden beds:
1. Various growing location options.
2. Best soil quality & good aeration
3. Better root spread
4. Higher yield form intensive gardening
5. Weed and pest barrier
6. Optimum irrigation conditions
7. Easy reach
8. Pleasing on the eye
9. No need to improve poor quality natural soil
10. Relief from tree roots
1 Various growing location options:
Raised or built up beds and container beds open the possibility to grow vegetables anywhere. Even if you have a very restricted outdoor area available. If it is exposed to some sun, it may possible to create your own vegetable garden. Some apartment dwellers even make use of traditional window sill flower boxes for growing herbs or veggies.
This is not a new concept however. During WW2, British civilians were advised to grow vegetables in every single place available, including patches of land, traditional flower beds and plant containers.
2 Best soil quality and good aeration:
A combination of good quality soil, organic compost and decomposed farmyard manure can be used to fill the raised beds. This will provide the plants with natural fertilizers and nutrients, as well as a loose substance for proper root breathing. Good aeration will improve nutrient absorption by the plant roots.
3 Better root spread:
Loose soil will lead to easier root spread in all directions. Larger root spread, will be increasing the root surface that comes in contact with the nutrients in the soil base. Better root spread in a loose fertile soil base, will therefore be beneficial to vigorous plant growth.
4 Higher Yield:
In general, raised bed gardening returns better yields than plants cultivated in natural soil.
As mentioned before, the more controlled environment of raised beds results in better soil quality, excellent natural nutrients and a well aerated substance. As the plant roots can grow unrestricted and progressively, plant growth itself is vigorous and as a result, higher yields are returned.
5 Weed and pest barrier:
When decomposed farm manure is used together with compost and good quality soil, chances are good that your raised beds will be relatively weed free. All those seeds being dormant for years and years in natural soil will not be present in the raised beds, sprouting form the water and ideal conditions created by your cultivating activities.
Nearby weeds form the natural soil will be screened off from your plants by the raised beds.
If the beds are high enough, it may even serve as a barrier against other garden pests like snails and moles.
6 Optimum irrigation conditions:
The beds form a controlled space that can be watered with ease. As it will be levelled out, irrigation water will be applied to a flat surface with even penetration. The high-quality soil substance will be loose with good penetration and moist retention can be easily controlled for plant absorption.
7 Easy reach:
It is much more convenient work in raised beds than to have to bend far down to work in flat soil. Even the elderly or physically handicapped people finds it ergonomically easier or for that matter possible to work raised beds.
8 Pleasing on the eye:
Raised beds can easily be placed into very well organised, and neatly looking planting areas. The different construction methods and materials available also contributes to endless possibilities to be creative and to make your garden pleasing on the eye.
9 No need to improve on poor quality natural soil:
Natural soil may be too sandy, clay soil, rocky, very dense, or just very poor. To improve natural soil into a fertile and suitable planting source may take very long or, in extreme cases, even be impossible.
This is where the benefit of controllable soil contents of raised beds comes in very handy. On the down side however, soil for the beds needs to be sourced and it will have a cost implication if you need to purchase it. Opposed to the cost and time implication of improving the quality of natural soil, the cost of acquiring soil might be lower.
10 Relief from tree roots:
If you have trees close buy your garden, the tree roots will surely come and absorb the nutrients that you feed to the natural soil. If you thus plant your veggies in natural soil, they will suffer from poor soil quality as the massive root system of the trees will constantly drain the soil from fertilizers and plant nutrients. With raised beds, all this can be eliminated.
This article serves as a basic summary of 10 benefits of planting vegetables in raised beds or containers.
As there may even be more pro’s, I’m sure there are also many con’s to planting in raised beds.
I trust you have enjoyed reading this.
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Cobus vdM / https://offgridbasics.com