Raised vegetable bed - lots of questions

by Adele
(Kettering UK)

What do you mean by 'mulch' ?
I built a raised vegetable bed - 12" high about three years back and at the time I had no idea what I was doing.
My garden is your typical rampant weeds, clay soil, rubble and every other nightmare. So I simply lined the raised bed with black weed suppressing material and put huge amounts of compost on top.
The whole bed is surrounded by stone chips, so I don't get slugs or snails, although a few other critters are starting to appear.
The bed has been quite successful since but my question is - when I make another bed in similar conditions, about how deep should the whole thing be to healthily accommodate plant roots? (There is an area I would like to use which has a hardcore surface and I'm too old and weak to break through it, so thought I could do similar to above - so how deep, please?)

Comments for Raised vegetable bed - lots of questions

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Sep 10, 2009
Raised gardens
by: Leon, Aussie

I built four raised gardens that supply most of my vegetable needs. Mine are 16 inches tall, which is perfect (not as far to bend over to pick my produce). My beds are 'no-dig' which involve a little bit more work initially, but produces great results. The beds are 8 feet long by 4 feet wide, making it easy to access the whole garden without stretching.
Hope this helps

Sep 10, 2009
Raised Vegetable Bed
by: Adele

Thanks, Leon that's very helpful - I was just worried that some roots which like a lot of depth wouldn't like to find a concrete base to have to dig through! I'll bear in mind your comments when I start the new beds.

Sep 23, 2009
Raised garden beds
by: ~ Megan ~

I think 16" for a raised bed is the very minimum and 2ft would be better. Many plant roots go much deeper than that, but you'll be able to grow plants in it ok, but remember if plants can't send their roots deep down, they will need extra atttention to make sure they get enough nutrients and water. Also often some plants like to send their roots deep down to keep cool in hot weather - and raised beds do get hot and are prone to drying out sooner that a flat garden.
~ Megan ~

Sep 24, 2009
Thanks for feedback
by: Adele

Many thanks, Megan - that's exactly what I was thinking about some roots needing further depth. Although, I wasn't aware of the extra watering and feeding for the raised beds, and will need to bear that in mind. Thanks again :)

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