Raised bed gardening is fast becoming the most popular way to garden in urban areas. Whether you live in the city or suburbs, you can have a mini-greenhouse for your home gardening needs. Raised bed gardening offers many advantages over traditional container gardening, and even outdoor gardens. A raised bed has a series of support rails or walls built right into its sides, rather than the more usual tube-like support systems used in other types of gardening. This allows the structure to completely adapt to whatever environment it’s placed in.
These structures are built in a variety of sizes and shapes, and you can choose between lightweight structures or larger models. You can find raised bed greenhouse kits and ready to assemble kits that will supply all of the building materials you need to build your home greenhouse. Some gardening tips for using these structures will be discussed below, along with some useful information on how to plant, maintain, and grow your plants.
Before you get started, it’s important that you learn how to properly prepare the soil for your plants. Raised beds typically have plenty of space between their foundation and the top of the greenhouse walls, allowing for proper drainage as well as supplying ample air circulation for healthy plant growth. When planting, you’ll want to create a rich soil mix with plenty of well drained soil and well rotted compost.
Plants that are successful in container gardening can adapt to any soil conditions, but many plants don’t do well in raised beds. In order to be successful in raising your plants, make sure to mimic the conditions they would experience in their natural habitat. If you’re planting seeds, you should plan to cover the soil about one inch deep with loosely packed sand. This will give them plenty of air and allow them to develop roots deeply, helping them better withstand the stresses of shipping and transplanting from their pots.
Easy access to the plants you want to raise is another great advantage to having a raised bed greenhouse. You can easily reach and move soil, fertilizer, and tools in the case of unwanted pests or disease. Having easy access also means getting right to work right away. If your plants are too far away from the greenhouse structure, you might miss some of the growing season, which could result in lower crop yields.
One major disadvantage to raised bed greenhouse gardening is watering. Watering from a raised bed greenhouse takes more time than traditional methods, especially if the raised bed greenhouse is located in a colder climate where early spring is a longer, more drying season. Watering manually is nearly impossible in a greenhouse, so automatic irrigation systems are recommended. Irrigation systems use pumps to evenly distribute water between the beds. These systems can even be connected to your home’s normal household plumbing system, saving you even more time and money.
In an effort to better protect their plants, most greenhouse owners choose not to grow annuals or perennials in their raised bed greenhouse. Plants like perennials do very well in the heat of summer and are quite drought resistant; however, they can’t handle very high temperatures or extended periods of light drought. Annuals, on the other hand, can handle up to 7 days of partial shade in the summer months. This allows you to take advantage of the full planting season, but in order to get good yield, you’ll have to wait for the weather to get warmer before you plant your annuals. Both of these plants are much better off planted in regular soil grown in a garden rather than in a raised bed greenhouse.
Many people think that they can’t grow plants in a raised bed greenhouse because it requires more gardening equipment. The truth is, most small-scale gardeners can easily do it with inexpensive commercial potting soil and fertilizer. A growing platform such as a growit raised bed greenhouse does require a sturdy frame and trellis for support. You also need a strong support mechanism and good lighting fixtures. But the savings in time and money that you will make by growing your favorite vegetables indoors cannot be matched by any outdoor garden.