WoodBlocX

  • WoodBlocX - shopping centres, apartments and more

    WoodBlocX timber raised beds, planters, ponds, walls and seats are not only loved by our customers for updating their gardens, patios and driveways, gardens, our strong and long-lasting structures can also be found in a number of other locations across the country.

    Our modular system can be seen in seen at one the UK’s busiest shopping centres; Westfield Stratford City, this huge retail hub attracts more than 50 million visitors a year and thousands on a daily basis. We installed a huge cascading planter at the entrance to the centre, nestled between an escalator and steps, the bespoke container is planted out with a mixture of trees and shrubs to bring a touch of nature to this urban shopping destination. You also find our raised beds around the outside of the centre providing visitors with areas to escape the hustle and bustle of the shops.

    We have also worked on roof gardens for student accommodation complexes from London to Aberdeen, creating relaxing spaces for students to unwind in that are both practical and functional. Using bespoke designs that work perfectly with the space, combining planters with integrated seating across large areas. Our raised bed designs incorporate curves and zig zags to transform the spaces along wth clever planting and lighting.

    Dundee's new Waterfront development includes a number of WoodBlocX raised beds in it's Slessor Garden, which is a multi-functional space for the the public to enjoy and for hosting events. Our raised beds were used to create the sensory and heath gardens, with one set of raised beds including three different sections and multi-level planting to allow for different soil types to be used for growing a variety of plant species.
    Our commercial work doesn’t stop there, we continue to partner with organisations across the country to provide raised beds for street planting and seating solutions for public spaces.

    If these snap-shots have given you ideas for your own garden you can shop our range over on the website or if you have an idea and you’re not quite sure how to execute it, get in touch with our design team who will work with your ideas to create a bespoke design free of charge. Click below to find out more.

  • Protecting crops over winter

    There has certainly been a change in the weather over the past few weeks with most of the UK already experiencing some overnight frost.

    Whilst the heating will be on inside to keep you and your family warm some plants in the garden can benefit from some extra protection too. If you’ve worked hard in the garden this year or if you would like to carry on growing edibles over winter then you need to think about crop protection options.

    Lift

    Protecting plants grown in containers is really simple; if the pots are light enough to pick up and carry they can be moved to a sheltered spot in the garden or placed inside a greenhouse. Plants such as dahlias should be lifted to protect them from the effects of the winter weather and stored in a dormant state in a greenhouse or shed. Other varieties that can benefit from lifting include pelargoniums, geraniums, begonias, gladioli and cannas.

    Mulch

    Spreading a good mulch around sensitive perennials will provide insulation and protect their sensitive root systems, a hardwood mulch is the best option, scatter it in borders and raised beds, building up a good protective layer, you could also use compost or straw. Don't wait until it is too cold to apply your mulch, add it whilst the soil is still moist and slightly warmer.

    Protect

    Larger containers and timber raised beds can be protected from the wind, rain and frost by ‘overwintering’. Simply wrap a protective cover around the structure, different materials can be used from hessian to fleece, your local garden centre will stock a good selection and will be able to advise which is best for the plants you need to protect.

    You can protect your crops all year round with WoodBlocX Crop Protectors. These attractive, rustic and functional rods enable to keep pests such at bay in the spring and summer with a covering of netting or to fix winter fleece or hessian protection too.

    Grow

    There are still crops that can be grown outside now in wooden raised beds, containers or open ground including onions, peas, broad beans and garlic. If you’re keen to get growing this winter check out our range of easy to build and hardwearing raised beds. Choose from all shapes and sizes to suit your garden.

  • How to make a raised bed: frequently asked questions

    From how to make a raised bed to where to put it, we have covered the most frequently asked questions to help you make the best choices for your garden.

    Q. What is the best position for a raised bed?

    A. Once you have decided where you would like to build your raised bed, take some time to note where the sun rises and sets. The amount of light that falls on that particular spot will help you decide whether it is the best place to build it or not, for example, if your raised bed has shade cast over it for most of the day certain plants or edibles may not thrive there.

    Q. What surface can a raised bed be built on?

    Most raised beds can be built on any surface and there is no need for foundations or cement, build them directly on soil, grass, paving, tarmac, concrete or even sloped gardens, just make sure that you are building on a solid and level surface. WoodBlocX raised beds are unique in their design, incorporating a series of strong dowels which means they are able withstand ground movement when built on a reasonable surface. To find out how to build a WoodBlocX raised garden bed click here.

    Q. What should I line my raised garden bed with?

    A. We recommend using a geotextile membrane liner as it will allow for better drainage than a standard plastic liner on any sized raised bed or planter to ensure the structure remains in excellent condition.

    Q. What soil should I fill my raised bed with?

    A. This totally depends on what you plan to grow. Raised beds are a great solution for gardens with poor soil as you can select the type you use. Filling the space with a rich compost mixture would work really well but would also be very expensive. We advise customers to use a good topsoil mix and add a soil improver or compost mix to the top layers. Sandy soil is the best all-rounder. Using a bought-in topsoil rather than using up any surplus from the garden gives you much more control over weeds. Soils can be made richer through using your own homemade compost or manure, but check whether these mixes are suitable for what you plan to grow and remember plants and vegetables can be supported with solid and liquid fertilisers too.

    Q. What can I grow in a raised bed?

    A. You can grow almost anything in a raised bed! Many of our customers favour them for growing edibles because the extra height makes the regular cycle of sowing, maintaining, weeding and harvesting really easy. Depending on the surface that your raised bed is built on you may need to consider planting deeper rooted varieties in taller beds rather than low-level beds.

    Raised beds are ideal for organic growing as you can control exactly what is used in them, also ericaceous plants such as rhododendron and camellia can also be planted using an acidic soil mixture.

    Q. How do I work out the soil quantity for my raised bed?

    A. If you are filling your raised bed completely then a simple way to work out how many litres is length(m) x width(m) x height(cm). If you plan to add a drainage layer to the bottom, subtract the height of the layer from the equation.

    Q. How do I maintain a raised bed?

    A. Our raised beds are maintenance free, the wood is pre-drilled and then pressure treated, we expect them to last 15 years or more without rotting, cracking or warping. Our structures are joined by a series of dowels that help to create a rigid structure which can withstand tension forces (each dowel joint will withstand up to 0.9 tonnes of shear force in our tests).

    Q. Can I build raised beds on a slope?

    A. Yes! WoodBlocX raised beds are ideal for sloped gardens, the beds can be designed to match the contours of your garden and with the addition of ground spikes, which will help hold the structure down on slopes, helping to prevent the structure from slipping sideways down the hill. Ground spikes are placed on the first layer of all WoodBlocX structures and are also located in every buttress. Many of our customers also use WoodBlocX for retaining walls to landscape their gardens. We recommend using our Free Bespoke Design Service for these projects as our experienced team can help you work out exactly what you need.

    Q. How deep does a raised bed need to be?

    A. Raising the height of your garden beds and borders makes gardening instantly more accessible, but you also need to consider the layout of the rest of the garden. Paths and steps can prove troublesome, opt for wider paths if possible, especially between raised beds if you have more than one. Our wooden raised beds can be built at heights between 0.25m - 1.05m and each structure is strong and sturdy enough to sit or lean on. Our helpful calculator tools will help you to understand the best height to suit your needs, as you select the different height options you will see details of the different benefits that particular height offers.

    Read our accessible gardening blog here.

    Creating an accessible garden
    Creating an accessible garden using raised beds
    Creating an accessible garden using raised beds

    Q. How often should I water my raised bed?

    A. This totally depends on there time of year but during warmer weather water twice a day, early morning and in the evening to prevent the sun scorching the plants. Solar or electric watering systems are a really good option if you struggle to lug watering cans around the garden. Raised beds also warm up quicker in the spring and cool down slower when the weather turns cold, which is brilliant for growing in general.

    Q. Do raised beds need drainage?

    A. Raised beds can be accessed without having to walk on them, this prevents soil compaction, which also improves drainage, helping plant roots to grow more freely and take on more nutrients. WoodBlocX raised beds of all sizes allow for drainage through the air gaps between each block, customers building our raised beds directly on patios, tarmac and concrete could benefit from a drainage layer at the bottom if the bed - stones or gravel can be used for this.

    If your garden is particularly susceptible to collecting surface water and feel you need an additional drainage source you could add a French drain to the base of the wall, this requires you digging a small trench, adding a perforated drainage pipe, which will needs to be directed away from the wall to either a main drain or to somewhere where it can easily soak away. Then simply fill with Type 1 or subbase and cover.

    Q. Can I build a raised bed on a roof or balcony?

    Yes! WoodBlocX is perfectly suited to balconies and roof gardens thanks to the small light weight blocks which can be easily moved around, whereas lengths of timber and heavy railway sleepers can be difficult to get up stairways and into lifts. Our raised beds and planters can be made to fit tight or narrow spaces and will instantly add character to your outdoor space.

    Find out about our free design service here.

    How to make a raised bed
    How to build a raised bed
    How to make a raised bed

    Q. What weedkillers or fertilisers should I use when growing plants in a raised bed?

    A. This is entirely up to the individual, we recommend using products that are kinder on the soil and environment, check for products that are clearly labelled natural, biological or have the stamp of approval from organic growing organisations such as the Soil Association or Organic Farmers & Growers Association. For weeds you can remove by hand or, if you're keen to use the no dig method, and have a space that you're starting from scratch with you can cover it with a sheet to stop the light getting in and then remove the weeds once they have perished. If you're keen to make your own natural weedkiller there's helpful information over at Garden Organic.

    Q. What is the best wood for a raised bed?

    A. Wood is by far the best material option for making raised beds, in most cases its easy to obtain, comes pre-treated and good value for money. The best wood for building raised beds depends on your preference. The most common varieties for for building raised beds, planters and even garden edging is pine or oak. Oak is generally much more expensive than pine. You can find out more about the different materials that can be used to build raised beds here.

    Q. What is the best wood preserver for raised beds?

    A. Buying a product that has pre-treated with a pressure treatment or wood that has been pre-treated is the best option. We drill the holes in our wooden blocks that our dowels fit into before we pressure treat the wood to ensure that the treatment penetrates almost 100% of the wood, this is why our structures will not rot, crack or warp. A pre-treated railway sleeper that is then drilled exposes untreated parts of the wood to moisture which, over time will lead to rot.

    To browse our full range of wooden raised beds, ponds, planters, walls, seats and more or to find out about our FREE design service click below
  • What is the best material for making a raised bed?

    What is the best material for making a raised bed?

    There are many different types of materials that can be used to build raised garden beds from wood through to brick, our customers tell us they spend time researching the options to find out which material is best suited for what they want to achieve in their garden. So what is the best material for making a raised bed?

    The aim of this blog is to include all of the information you need in one place to save you time searching and to help you make the right choice for your next garden project.

    We’ve listed the different materials you could use and included approximate costs based on raised beds of similar sizes, Options listed are in price order.

    Brick raised beds

    Raised beds can be made from either brand new or reclaimed bricks, you will need to include foundations to build on to create a stable structure. To build it you could set yourself a challenge but you will need to ensure that the bricks are laid straight and level and the mortar mix is correct. If you’re not confident in bricklaying it is best to enlist the help of a skilled tradesperson.

    • Brick raised bed maintenance- Repointing of mortar joints, plus frost-damaged bricks may need to be replaced as and when
    • Materials - Bricks, concrete for the footings, sand, cement and, coping stones
    • Costs - Based on L 2.25m x W 1.5m x H 0.45m - approx £500 for materials (if buying directly from a trade counter), plus additional for labour costs if you are not building the wall yourself
    Brick raised bed
    Railway sleeper raised beds

    Railway sleeper raised beds

    Building wooden raised beds out railway sleepers is fairly straightforward, you can buy lengths from timber merchants or garden and DIY retailers in hardwood and softwood varieties (pine or oak), the lengths will need to be cut to size, and you will need to drill holes down through the sleepers and insert reinforcing bars to hold them together. Most new railway sleepers are pre-treated with a preservative, older sleepers or reclaimed sleepers tend to be treated with creosote which is harmful and not recommended for using in the garden.

    • Railway sleeper raised bed maintenance - Use an annual wood preservative treatment to prevent rotting, creocote (not creosote mentioned above) is the recommended option for this. The are untreated and treat varieties  option available.
    • Materials - Treated softwood sleepers, reinforcing bars, sleeper brackets / angle brackets. The traditional / standard railway sleeper size is 2400mm x 200mm x 100mm - shorter and thinner versions are available.
    • Costs - Based on L 2.25m x W 1.5m x H 0.45m - approx £22 - £28 per sleeper £330 and £100 for screws, brackets, reinforcing bars.

    WoodBlocX raised beds

    An easy-to-build, waste-free option, no cutting or drilling is required, the pieces are similar to Lego and are built up like brick-work and held together with a series of dowels, these combined with the layers of blocks make a strong structure which will last for 15 years or more. No special skills or tools are needed to build a WoodBlocX raised bed and each kit comes with a set of step by step instructions.

    • WoodBlocX raised bed maintenance - No annual maintenance required, the blocks are pre-drill and then pressure treated making the wood extra strong and durable
    • Materials - (All included in your kit) wooden blocks, capping, dowels and wedges, angle plates, step by step instructions
    • Costs - Based on L 2.25m x W 1.5m x H 0.45m - £412.50 - this model can be viewed here
    What is the best material for making raised beds

    Wooden board or decking board raised beds

    By far the cheapest option for building raised beds, however, wooden boards and decking are only really suitable for low-level planting as the boards are not strong enough to hold the weight of large amounts of soil. To build simply cut the boards to size and use 3” 2” timber as stakes and to reinforce the corners and to create a frame to build to. To answer the question; what is the best material for making a raised bed? We'd say that wooden boards or decking boards are a good option for allotments to separate beds.

    • Wooden board raised bed maintenance - Replacing rotten and warped boards, every few years, treating or painting
    • Materials - Lengths of board available in a variety of sizes, 3” 2” timber for securing the boards in place, screws of varying lengths
    • Costs - Based on L 2.25m x W 1.5m x H 0.45m - approx £110 for boards, £10 3” 2” timber and £10 for the screws

    What is the best wood for raised beds?

    Wood is by far the best material option for making raised beds, in most cases its easy to obtain, comes pre-treated and good value for money. The best wood for building raised beds depends on your preference. The most common varieties for for building raised beds, planters and even garden edging is pine or oak. Oak is generally much more expensive than pine.

    Other materials

    There are metal raised bed options available, made from galvanised steel, kits are fairly simple to put together using bolts and prices start at around £450. There are also plastic options for low- level planting but these are not built to last.

    In conclusion...What is the best material for making a raised bed?

    Research is key when buying a raised bed, you need make sure the material you choose is right for you, whether it is wood, metal or even recycled plastic.

    You might want something that is long lasting for your forever home, or low budget to keep your allotment beds in check, an accessible planter that is wheelchair friendly or show stopper investment ready for when you put your house on the market.

    To browse our wide range of wooden raised beds, planters, railway sleeper style raised beds, ponds, seats, retaining wall kits, or to use our free bespoke design service click the button below.

  • Our sustainability story

    Wood is the heartbeat of WoodBlocX and it is our duty to ensure that the wood we use is grown ethically, sustainably and that waste is repurposed effectively. All of the wood used in our products is harvested in ‘managed forests’ which are areas of woodland where trees are felled and replanted with seedlings.

    A couple of interesting statistics…a whopping 5.7 million tonnes of carbon dioxide is sequestered from the atmosphere by these types of forests in the UK, and, trees play a vital role in our economy, with the wood processing industry providing 64,000 jobs in the UK.

    So it’s important that when you buy a wood-product that it is not just from an environmentally-friendly company, but that the good ethics are present all the way back down the supply chain to where that company sources its materials, when using a company like ours you are guaranteed not only a high quality product but also the highest environmental credentials.

    Furthermore, our timber is accredited by the FSC (Forestry Stewardship Council). The FSC is an international body that sets the standards for responsible forest management, and ensures that all timber products bearing its mark are from sustainably-managed woodland, so that you can be sure that your garden materials are from woodland that has its water, soil and ancient trees protected, and that the forestry operation does not use hazardous chemicals.

    The modular timber constructions from WoodBlocX – raised beds, planters, retaining walls and terracing, ponds, benches and more – are all made using mostly UK-grown timber (some shortfall is made up with Latvian timber that also meets our strict guidelines). Using UK timber drastically reduces our ‘timber miles’ and carbon footprint. The more UK-grown wood is used to make products, the more trees will be planted to meet the demand, and we all know that more trees in the world is a good thing. Imported wood can often be from areas that are not managed sustainably, causing untold damage to the earth’s wildlife and climate – WoodBlocX UK timber has none of those concerns.

    Our timber is treated using a water-based preservative (Wolmanit CX-10), so there are no nasty chemicals to leach into your garden’s soil which makes WoodBlocX raised beds and planters ideal for organic gardening and growing. WoodBlocX constructions are so strong that they don’t need foundations – even for retaining walls – so you won’t have to use any cement, which has many environmental concerns connected to it. The dowels that fix the BlocX together are even made using recycled plastic, so it’s all in all one of the greenest products on the market.

    In addition, the manufacturing the wooden blocks for our kits creates a lot of sawdust that we don’t need, to ensure that it does not go to waste, it is collected by a local energy plant based up here in the Highlands of Scotland and transformed into pellets for biomass boilers, powering homes sustainably with a by-product that we cannot use.

    A WoodBlocX installation a great addition to your garden for growing your own ornamentals and edibles, made from high-quality sustainable materials from environmentally conscious sources, plus each one goes towards creating renewable energy for homes and businesses too!

  • The benefits of raised beds

    The benefits of using raised beds

    Here at WoodBlocX, we know a thing or two about raised beds and the benefits they can bring to your garden.

    After all, we have been designing, manufacturing and delivering raised garden beds to customers across the UK and Europe for the best part of a decade.

    Keep reading to find our top 9 list of raised bed benefits:

    • Raised Bed Benefit #4 - Grow anywhere on any surface
      • Place your raised beds on patios, concrete, tarmac, grass or soil.
    • Raised Bed Benefit #7 - Extended growing season
      • Soil warms up quicker in spring and retains heat longer in autumn

     

    We've gone into a little more detail below on these key benefits of raised beds.

     

    Benefit #1 - Use raised beds to create better soil conditions

    Increase the quality of your soil

    Raised beds give you greater control over what conditions your produce can grow in. That’s why they are often a great option for new-build homes or gardens with poor soil quality.

    Since new beds need to be filled, you can use the best quality surplus soil you can find in your garden if that’s an option. Or you can add some brand-new soil.

     

    Which soil should I choose?

    When growing produce such as fruit and veg or herbs, we recommend using a fresh, sterilised topsoil to make sure your soil will be free from weeds, pests and diseases to start with.

    Plus you can give the growth of your produce a boost by using a soil improver or organic matter (compost) for even healthier crops and bigger yields.

    Pretty much anything can grow really well in a raised bed if you use the available soil options to your advantage.

    Raised beds can be used to grow annuals, perennials, shrubs and even plants that need a specific soil, including ericaceous varieties such as azaleas, rhododendron and camellia. Just adapt the soil to suit the plant!

    The benefits of raised beds - improved soil conditions

    Benefit #2 - Soil drains properly in a raised bed

    Say no to soil compaction

    Simply put, raised beds can be accessed without having to walk on them.

    This prevents soil compaction and helps plant roots grow more freely. Less compacted soil can also help plants take on more nutrients and make them more resilient to disease and frost.

    In addition to this, WoodBlocX raised beds of all sizes allow for drainage through the air gaps between each block.

    In general, raised beds are a great solution if you have boggy soil, clay soil or any other soil that doesn’t promote optimal growing conditions.

    Simply build your raised garden bed directly on top of your problem soil and fill it with new soil of your choice.

     

    Drainage recommendations for WoodBlocX raised beds on various surfaces
    WoodBlocX raised beds that are built directly on top of soil or grass do not require any additional drainage.

    Those built on patios, tarmac and concrete can benefit from a drainage layer at the bottom of the bed.

    We also recommend lining your WoodBlocX raised bed with a permeable liner or damp proof membrane. Once you have added one of these options, simply add a layer of stones or gravel for better drainage.

    Ideally, your draining layer is about 100mm deep - which is equal to the depth of one block.

    The benefits of raised beds - build on any surface

    Benefit #3 - Build raised beds at a height that suits you

    Easy access for all generations of growers

    Raised beds are a great gardening solution for people of all ages. The added height is a massive benefit that makes everything from sowing to watering, weeding, pest control and harvesting so much easier.

     

    Some tips on choosing the optimal raised bed height

    • Extra height is ideal as you get older but you may want to consider a low raised bed for youngsters to access.
    • Choose the height and depth of your raised bed wisely based on its end use and end user:
      • Low level raised beds (0.25m) are ideal for dividing up your growing areas. For low raised beds built on concrete or paving choose shallow-rooted plants such as sedums, crocosmia, calendula or nasturtiums.
      • For controlling pests such as rabbits or for keeping pet dogs away from your plants, raised beds up to 0.45m should do the trick to keep them at bay.
      • For maximum ease of access, tall raised beds from 0.55m are ideal.

    Check out our Size Matters blog post for more information about choosing the right size for your raised beds.

    Benefit #4 - Grow anywhere on any surface

    No need for foundations or groundworks

    The unique way in which WoodBlocX structures are built means that they don’t need any significant foundations or groundworks. The modular system of individual ‘BlocX’ already provides extra strength and protection against movement, warping and cracks.

     

    Build it on any level surface

    This also means that you can build your WoodBlocX raised bed on any flat surface, such as grass, soil, tarmac, patio paving or concrete. We always recommend ensuring the ground is level ahead before starting your build. Use a spirit level and sand or subbase to achieve a flat surface if needed.

    Benefit #5 - Keep out animals and pests

    If you live close to a field you may be visited by rabbits or even badgers. Higher raised beds will prevent these animals nibbling your prized plants and veg.

    Our handy made-to-measure raised bed calculator tool tells you instantly if the height you have selected is suitable for deterring pests.

    Benefit #6 - Use raised beds to landscape gardens

    Raised beds are an easy solution for landscaping sloping gardens. Stepped raised beds can be used for both flat and sloped gardens. Use them to add height and interest to a patio area, or to add different sections for planting or use them to landscape a sloping garden.

    Lots of our customers opt to add steps to run alongside the raised beds that are used to landscape the garden to tie everything together. To see exactly how our structures work retaining earth to landscape a garden click here.

    We recommend using our Free Bespoke Design Service for sloping  garden designs to ensure you get exactly what you need for your project.

    Benefit #7 - Get your greens to grow for longer

    Compared to open ground, raised beds warm up much quicker in spring and retain heat for longer in autumn. This is great for growing edibles as it extends the growing season.

    In addition, having easy access to the entire growing space means you can quickly add protection such as plant covers, fleece or cloches to certain plants when the frosts arrive.

    Benefit #8 - Add value to your property

    Research suggests if your property has a garden it can add up to 5% to the value of your house and that figure could be much higher if you have invested in quality items for your plot such as raised beds, ponds, sheds and beautiful paving.

    WoodBlocX retaining wall ideas
    The benefits of using raised beds
    The benefits of using raised beds

    Benefit #9 - A sustainable and non-toxic alternative

    Wood is one of the best materials for raised beds and our raised beds are made from the highest quality timber.

    The wood is pressure-treated and because WoodBlocX are pre-drilled, the non-toxic treatment penetrates to almost 100% of the wood, making our structures durable, long-lasting, and a great alternative to railway sleepers which tend to be chemically-treated.

    We use rough-sawn wood which will naturally fade to a grey over the years and doesn’t need any maintenance or treatment. 

    To find out more about our wide range of wooden raised beds and planters and to find out how simple it is to build beautiful long lasting structures for your garden click the button below

  • WIN one of three Garden on a Roll autumn borders

    After the dry and very hot spell in June and July gardens across the UK suffered, with lawns drying out and plants in beds and borders turning an unsightly shade of brown. If this sounds like your garden then our latest competition is for you!

    We have teamed up with Garden on a Roll to help rescue your border.

    When planning a planting scheme for a border it can be difficult to work out how many plants to fill it with and which plants will look good together, this can result in over-spending on plants and a messy border. Garden on a Roll use the expertise of garden designers to select the plants that work best together and also show you where to plant them.

  • Autumn garden updates

    With the hot summer days making way for the cooler autumnal weather, September and October are great months for making the changes in the garden that you didn’t get round to doing in the spring and summer. Here are few tips from us to get you started...

    Tidy up

    Lots of plants fell victim to the hot dry weather in June and July whilst others will have flourished, by now the garden will have lost its bright and fresh glow and be looking a little be bedraggled. Arm yourself with a good pair of secateurs and set to work cutting back old growth of spent plants and flowers, remove any dead plants, cut back rapid-growing herbs such as oregano and mint, hard prune roses and weed beds and borders. Lawns will have begun to spring back to life now, mow them and tidy up bushy and overgrown edges. 

    Update at your own pace

    Now that the BBQ and alfresco dining season is well and truly over it's a great time to think about making updates to the garden. There’s less pressure than in spring or summer to have the garden ready for a certain time so you can move at your own pace, however fast or slow that may be.

    If you’re looking at starting a complete garden redesign our design team can help you by creating a WoodBlocX design that is totally bespoke to your garden free of charge. Simply call, 
    email or fill in the quick design survey and we will do the rest for you. Our versatile system can be used to create fully integrated gardens that include planters steps, raised beds and retaining walls, the can be built by you saving £££s on labour costs. If you a complete garden redesign is out of the question check out our 'Transform your garden in a weekend' blog.

    Maintenance 

    Painting sheds and fences, cleaning greenhouse glass, trimming bushes, replacing rotten raised beds and repairing patios are all jobs that cannot wait until next spring. Make a list of the jobs you need to do in your garden and tackle them starting with the most important. Keep your eyes peeled for special offers of paints and materials at DIY stores and garden centres. For rotten raised beds made from wooden boards or railway sleepers consider upgrading to a hardwearing and long-lasting WoodBlocX timber raised bed, no annual maintenance is needed as the wood is pressure treated making it super durable.

    For ideas and inspiration for your next garden update visit our website.

  • Accessible gardening

    Gardens can present a multitude of problems for people with mobility issues, uneven surfaces, low-level planting and narrow pathways can make getting out and enjoying the garden impossible for some. However, by making a few simple updates and creating a low-maintenance space can make the world of difference.

    Uneven surfaces and paths

    Flat, smooth and debris-free surfaces are a must for anyone with mobility issues, an uneven surface can increase the risk of falls, paved/hard landscaped areas are ideal as grass, mud and gravel surfaces can become dangerous after a spell of wet weather.

    Ensure fallen leaves and other garden debris is cleared on a regular basis. Pathways need to be wide enough to suit the user.

    Planting

    Anyone with back pain will know that ground or low level planting is difficult, kneeling and bending to tend and weed the areas can cause more pain. Consider lifting planted areas by installing raised beds. Our hardwearing timber beds can be built to a height to suit you, each structure is hardwearing and sturdy enough to lean or sit on. If mobility is preventing you from venturing right out into the garden, consider installing smaller raised planters close to the house. Read about our recommendations for raised bed heights here.

    Seating

    Seating in one form or another is an essential part of any garden, creating an area to sit and enjoy the garden or to take a break from gardening. The positioning of garden furniture is key and of course it needs to be easy to access, if you prefer a sunny spot make sure you note where the sun falls at the time of day that you are most likely to use the space. Our timber garden benches and seating can be incorporated into a raised bed design or installed separately.

    Storage and watering

    Some sport of storage is a must for all gardens, some traditional sheds can be narrow and difficult to access for storing garden tools, watering cans, hose pipes and other garden essentials, a good option for anyone needing easy access is a lean-to shed that sits directly on the patio with wide double doors which can be opened up taking away the need to step inside.

    For larger gardens a good irrigation system for the dryer months will not only save lugging a watering can around the garden, it will also save a lot of time too and ideal for dry summer weather.

    Check out our accessibility page and the raised bed kits that we recommend

  • Healthy Gardening

    To celebrate the Soil Association’s Organic September, we’ve put some tips together for ‘healthy gardening’. Maintaining a garden is hard work and it can be easy to reach for the chemicals to control weeds and pests as a quick and convenient fix, but there some quick switches you can make to work towards creating a healthier garden...

    The growing space

    Many gardeners opt to grow plants and veg in wooden raised beds either at low level to clearly divide a space up or to add extra height, making the area more accessible. Railway sleepers are a popular choice but many are chemically treated and over time the chemicals can leach into the soil. WoodBlocX raised beds use sustainable wood that is pressure treated without chemicals making them a great clean option. 

    Control products

    There are lots of products available that offer alternatives to harsh chemicals, look for products in garden centres and retailers that show either the Soil Association or Organic Farmers & Growers logos, these products will include kinder alternative ingredients and generally work just as well as the chemical versions.

    Weeding - If you’re lucky enough to not have too many weeds to deal with they can be controlled by hand, but it can be a thankless task so it's always good to have a treatment to hand. There has been lots of debate about the use of glyphosate in weedkillers recently due and its potentially harmful effects on our health, most weedkillers will clearly state on the bottle whether they are glyphosate-free, look for the products that feature natural active ingredients.

    Pest control - Encourage natural pest control in your garden, make a bug hotel to attract beneficial insects which will feed on other insect pests. The tiny gaps between the blocks in our raised beds are also great hiding places for beneficial bugs. Birds and hedgehogs are great pest controllers, install feeders and baths for birds and make sure hedgehogs can get in and out of the garden. Chickens are also a good option but they can scratch and peck away at the plants and veg you've grown! If you do need some extra help in the form of a bug killer spray or concentrate look for neonicotinoid-free treatment, neonicotinoids are used in pest control and are harmful to bees.

    Feeding - There are lots of organic solid and liquid fertilisers available or you can make your own compost, whilst this won’t be fully organic it is a great way to utilise kitchen waste and is much more sustainable than using shop-bought compost.

    For made to measure raised beds for growing plants and edibles, made from clean and sustainable timber, head over to the website.

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