Saturday, December 8, 2012

Raised Beds are THE Way to Go!

In case you missed my post from last March, I will yet again extoll the virtues of raised beds.

1) they warm sooner in the spring, allowing for earlier plantings
2) they hold warmth longer in the season, your plants will produce longer
3) not as much bending (none if you build them tall enough!) to plant and harvest
4) not as much weeding
5) the soil doesn't compact since you are not walking on it (raised beds are usually no more than 4 feet wide, just right for reaching the middle from either side)
6) you are in control of the soil in the beds
7) pets are less likely to bother stepping up to trample your plants (a problem I have)
8) depending on the design, you can sit on the sides of them while planting, harvesting, or just to enjoy the garden
9) you can plant in the holes if you use cinder blocks
10) they drain better

#10 is what I am happy for this time of year.  We just had a week of very heavy, record setting rains.  My far back, where the beds are, is under water. More so than last year.  Imagine trying to grow anything not planted in raised beds!  My current clay soil is so different from the adobe clay soil in CA.  My father planted directly into that soil, long before the days of bagged compost and potting soil. Oh, he did make his own "leaf mold," so he did have compost.  He built a topless wooden box, with a hinged flap at the bottom.  Leaves were just piled on the top, and as they rotted he opened the flap and scooped out the rich composted "leaf mold."  But, my clay isn't like that. 

Cookie likes the green, green grass!

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