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.
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.
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.
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.
Do raised beds need drainage?
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.
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.