WHAT IS A RAISED GARDEN?
Raised-bed gardening is a type of gardening in which the soil is contained by three- to four-foot-wide containment units constructed of wood, rock, or concrete that can be of different shapes or heights. The soil is elevated above the surrounding dirt and supplemented with compost if desired.
Raised ground beds, supported raised beds, and containerized raised beds are the three types of raised garden beds.
The materials used to create vegetable garden beds should be carefully selected. Modular raised garden bed solutions are obtainable, made of long-lasting polyethylene that is UV stabilized and food-grade, ensuring that it does not leak harmful chemicals into the soil or degrade in the weather. There are so many special creative metal raised garden bed kits available, or you can raise your own using corrugated metal linens on the borders inside a wood frame.
Raised beds may improve pest and weed control and excellent design and optimal soil for growing food, flowers, herbs, and other plants. In addition, raised beds improve the site’s look and give a lively, attractive appearance. Depending on your preferences, style, budget, climate, and the materials you have the most accessible access to.
POINTS TO CONSIDER WHILE CHOOSING A RAISED BED
A raised garden bed can be made out of almost anything that can support soil and plants. When choosing the best materials to use, you may count on several variables.
Safety – Raised garden beds may be made in a variety of inspired and cost-effective ways. Toxic compounds like lead, arsenic, and other heavy metals may be present in the wood, which can migrate (leach) into your soil and food, even though new pressure-treated lumber is less risky when are compared to the old material.
Many recommend having your current garden soil tested for fertility and pollutants if you’re using it for raised beds. For example, lead is the most frequent contaminant found in built-up soils, and a soil test from a lab will tell you if it’s present.
Longevity – If you want your raised garden beds to survive, use sturdy, durable materials. Garden beds, after all, are exposed to near-constant wetness, the elements, and maybe insects or pests like termites.
Cost – Higher-priced, higher-quality materials can last decades or longer. If you choose to save money upfront using less expensive materials, you may jeopardize your raised bed’s longevity.
It’s critical to understand the pros and drawbacks of different building materials before making a decision. For example, you don’t want to use a material that releases harmful compounds into the soil. So, what is the finest material to use to build raised garden beds?
WOODEN OR METAL RAISED BEDS
Wooden Raised Beds
Wood is arguably the most popular and least priced alternative, and it’s an excellent fit for a gardener with some skills. Another alternative is composite wood, created from recycled wood shavings and plastic resins, but it can quadruple the project’s cost. On the other hand, durable raised beds are made entirely of 85 percent mineralized wood and 15 percent cement, making them one of the most environmentally friendly and healthful building materials available.
Because hardwood lumber is denser than softwood timber, it has a higher level of durability and strength. As a result, Oak wine barrels improve the wine’s flavor and provide resistance, plentiful moisture, and durability.
Wood will decay over time, especially if it comes into touch with damp soil. Insects that wish to eat the wood may be attracted to it.
Douglas fir, pine, spruce, and juniper are all popular softwood timber species. These materials are less expensive than redwood or cedar, but they are not much durable. Raised garden beds built of these softwoods are reported to undergo anywhere from 4 to 7 years, depending on the environment. Therefore, the diameter of your wood planks directly influences the longevity of your garden bed.
It is to be noted that directly influences all forms of untreated wood will need to be replaced at the time. The length of time it will last is determined by the type of wood used and the environment in which it is used. For example, untreated wood may only last a few years if you live in a hot and humid climate. However, on dry land, the same wood can be used for several years.
Metal Raised Garden Beds
For stormy areas, steel-raised garden beds are a good option! Some people are afraid that metal beds would heat their soil, but this is unfounded. Instead, make a raised garden bed out of prefabricated metal beds.
If you decide to use galvanized metal beds, keep heat and drainage in mind. Livestock troughs are a popular choice, but make sure there are enough drainage holes in the bottom. To avoid drowning plant roots, water will need a way to escape.
Is it safe to use metal garden beds?
Yes, well-constructed galvanized steel garden beds are pretty safe to use for growing food. A coating of zinc coats steel, effectively sealing it and preventing corrosion and rust. Significant quantities of zinc are unlikely to leak from the layer into your soil. Zinc is a mineral that is found naturally in soil and is an essential element for plant development.
It may be used for a variety of growth purposes. Finally, it is designed to promote appropriate soil aeration, beneficial to water/nutrient flow and root health.
The Bottom Line Directly Influences
The first step in creating a raised garden bed is to select the appropriate building material. Several options are available, some of which are inexpensive and easy to find out, while others are costly and long-lasting.
Avoid using anything that may leak dangerous chemicals into your soil while creating a raised bed or gardening boxes.
Now that you understand the differences between wooden and metal raised beds, you may use them to make raised garden beds. Hopefully, selecting which material is perfect for your garden will be a lot easier.
Many variables influence the appropriate material for raised garden beds. For example, metal raised garden beds do not leech toxins into the soil, and, in addition, it is more durable than other building materials.