Raised bed gardening is an excellent way to grow small plots of edible and ornamental plants and herb garden. When you grow flowers and vegetables in a raised bed, you can prevent native soil compaction while helping with poor drainage by providing good drainage for your young plants and leafy greens.
Plus, raised beds also help keep weeds and pests such as slugs and snails away from your precious crops providing them with the best growing conditions.
If you’re planning raised garden beds for the first time, a beginner gardener, or if you haven’t had much luck with this gardening format, then these raised bed gardening tips are for you and will help you avoid the pitfalls.
Today, we’ll be discussing seven of the most common mistakes made in raised bed vegetable gardening for beginner gardeners and experts alike so you can avoid them.
You might also like this: Pros And Cons Of Raised Bed Gardening
Using Unsafe Materials
Traditionally, raised ground garden beds and planter boxes are made from decay-resistant untreated wood such as untreated cedar as well as rot-resistant woods.
Still, there are also other building materials you can use, too. Non-wood options include stones, concrete blocks, bricks, cinder blocks, or synthetic lumber.
However, there are different materials that you should stay away from when building your raised garden beds. Stay away from pressure-treated or chemically treated wood kind of wood and lumber for your garden boxes.
These chemicals can leach into the good soil turning it into poor soil and be absorbed by your different plants and food crops, but they can also affect your plant growth.
Making Your Raised Garden Beds Too Wide
When working with a raised garden bed and planning your planting schemes for raised beds, make sure that you can reach all of its areas and garden space without having to step on the loose soil. Go for a maximum width of 4 cubic feet in width so you can work comfortably in your planting area and have easy access for succession planting.
This is a common mistake people make, and when you step on the rich soil in raised bed gardens, it compacts it and can disturb the natural root growth of your vegetable plants. The soil needs to be loose and easy for deep roots such as tree roots to penetrate in your beautiful gardens.
If you want to grow more plants and root veggies, opt for multiple raised beds. Just make sure that they are separated by pathways that are 2 to 3 feet wide so you can maneuver around easily.
Neglecting To Mulch
Mulch is just as important step in planting in a raised garden planting bed as it is in ground planting beds. It prevents weeds from growing, helps maintain soil temperature, and retains soil moisture.
Use straw, grass clippings, leaves, or wood chips after planting. You can also plant a cover crop in your garden area at the end of every growing season to avoid breaking down and compacting the soil in your garden.
Not having an irrigation garden plan can spell trouble for your raised garden bed. You need to be able to efficiently keep your crops hydrated for proper growth.
While you can do your daily rounds of manual irrigation using a watering can, or garden hose, there are more efficient ways to keep your plants and root crops happily hydrated, such as tools for a self watering raised bed.
Instead, you can place your raised beds for vegetables near a water source or raised bed water feature and use soaker hoses or drip irrigation systems for raised bed garden self watering, so you don’t have to spend time hand watering plants.
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Using the Wrong Kind of Soil
The type of soil you use in your raised bed vegetable garden plays a vital role in the health of your crops. Potting soil drains too quickly and won’t provide your mature plants and edible plants with the drainage to get rid of all the excess water and provide all nutrients it needs.
Meanwhile, bagged soil mix for raised garden beds can contain too many chemical fertilizers that can affect the growth and yield of some plants and root vegetables, making it not the best soil for raised beds.
Instead, go for a combination of garden soil combined with organic compost, organic matter, and organic materials such as peat moss make the best soil amendments for raised beds. Making them great for your raised bed soil and to supply your plants and fresh vegetables with the right nutrients.
Not Using Labels
It’s easy to forget where you planted what in your own vegetable garden. When planting raised garden beds, use garden labels to know where each plant is. You can also mark your rows to avoid overcrowding.
Using Harmful Chemicals Near Raised Beds
Chemicals that contain herbicides can poison the fertile soil even if they are not used directly in your raised garden beds. Not only can the wind carry toxins in your garden beds, but runoff water can also carry them to other parts of your ground garden and ground beds.
Instead of using harmful chemical pesticides and herbicides, opt for a more natural options. This will help get rid of weeds without harming the rest of your garden.
I hope these raised garden bed ideas and things to avoid when making raised beds will help you in your raised bed gardening. Gardening is all about trial and error, what works for your neighbor may not be the right choice or work for you, and that’s ok.
Just do what works for you and makes gardening enjoyable. That’s what it’s all about anyway.
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