Putting the garden beds to bed



a close up of a greens and broccoli: It's almost time to put our garden beds to bed.


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It’s almost time to put our garden beds to bed.

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) – As we bring in the last of our fall harvest, it’s tempting to just dig up the rest of the garden and get rid of the remnants, but current thinking says it’s best to disturb the ground as little as possible.

“The less you can disturb the soil the healthier that ecosystem is,” says Master Gardener Dohnn Wood. “Think of it as if someone came in and just took a back hoe to your street. Your life would be really disrupted right? It’s kind of the same thing. If we were to rip up the soil and turn it all over, all that life that’s happening under the soil would all be disrupted and that’s actually what feeds your plants so the less we can do to disturb that, the happier that life will be and the more plentiful.”

The Woods still have food left to harvest but some of their garden beds are ready to be put to bed for the year, with the goal of improving the soil and making their spring work as easy as possible.

The first step is getting rid of the remaining vegetable material.

“Traditionally, what we’ve been told is to pull that up, to just twist it up and pull it out by the roots,” says Wood. “But the current thinking is, to cut that off.”

This leaves the root of the plant in the ground to feed the microbes in the soil.

Wood also says to pull out any perennial weeds, like dandelions so they don’t get a start for next year, then add a layer of compost on the top.

“You can buy bagged compost,” says Wood. “You just want something that’s biologically active. And we’re going to cover the bed with about an inch of fresh compost.”

The compost is added to replace the nutrients that are taken out of the soil during harvest.

“If it was in the wild, it would have just fallen down and started to be eaten by the bugs,” says Wood. “So we’re having to replace that with something because we’ve taken the food for ourselves.”

“There is no waste in nature so if we try and mimic those concepts, we can grow tons of food in small areas, without really a lot of work,” Wood concludes.

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Houston-based company offers and installs raised kitchen garden beds

Have you picked up any new hobbies during the pandemic? Well, turns out gardening is one that’s really growing in popularity.

Houston-based company offers and installs raised kitchen garden beds

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A sprouting trend gardening expert, Jill Oliver says she has seen blossom over the last few months, after people started looking for a safe outlet.

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“I have seen a huge spike in gardening. As you can imagine when all the businesses shut down, we had nowhere else to go except for outside, so it became a great opportunity to learn how to garden,” Jill Oliver, with Rooted Garden, said.

Oliver is a lead consultant for Rooted Garden, a Houston-based company that designs and installs raised kitchen garden beds all over the city.

It is a perfect gardening solution for those who don’t have a lot of space around their home.

From relieving stress, to harvesting your own fresh fruits and veggies, Oliver said gardening has several health benefits, especially for those worried about the coronavirus.

“It is a perfect way to social distance. First, you’re outside, you’re among these beautiful plants, you’re six feet apart, enjoying all this beauty,” she said.

She described it as a hobby that people of all ages can take up, and at the end, enjoy the fruits of their labor.

“It’s a fun hobby for the whole family, for the very young, to the elderly,” she said.

Oliver said kitchen gardens usually take one to two days to install and cost around $125 per square foot.

Oliver said the backyard transformations are truly amazing. She also adds Houston is the perfect city to test your green thumb in, because its climate allows you to garden all year round.

Oliver’s advice to beginners hoping to start a garden on a much smaller scale?

“I would say just go for it, get a pot with some soil, put some seeds in there, give it a try,” she explained. “You’ll be amazed. Nature is amazing to watch things grow; it is truly miraculous.”

For more information about Rooted Gardens and its online blog, Gardenary that offers free resources on how to succeed in gardening, click here.



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Hi! I’m Jessica and I’ve been growing vegetables for over half a decade now. Growing up my parents always had a garden in the backyard, and when we moved to our most recent house I was able to take over! Now I have about 100 square feet of growing space along with blueberries, banana plants, and fruit trees.

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Productive Implementation of Leisure: Raised Garden Beds

Raised garden beds or garden boxes, are popular and productive gardening methods. Here the gardeners can easily produce vegetables, flowers and other plants in lowest amount of land saving labor, money and time.

Benefits of Raised Garden Beds:

The raised garden bed is higher than the surrounding ground and is built in a geometric way so there is extra pathway without hampering the plants. The bed protects the plants from pathway weeds and other pests like slugs and snails. It also protects the garden soil from washed away in rain water. Weeds are easy to pull up as the soil is loose. Even the gardeners need not remove weeds when the crops grow close together as weeds cannot compete with the crops.

Raised garden beds also save time; labor and money as you need dig, fertilize, and water only the beds, not the entire ground. Gardeners who cannot move freely find raised beds the perfect solution as they can care for the plants sitting on a wheelchair or on the strong frame of the beds.

Raised garden beds are bottomless and open to the ground that allow the plant roots farther into the ground to collect available nutrients in the ground. Here crops grow better as the soil in the beds is deep, loose, and fertile.

How to Build Raised Garden Beds:

Raised garden beds are higher than the ground level and consist of fertile soil surrounded by a frame to keep it in place. The frame is generally made of wood, rock, or concrete blocks. Among them wood is better and Eco-friendly. Choosing the most sustainable wood makes the bed last longer, even ten years without repair.

The beds are separated by paths from where the gardeners take care of the plants. Before setting up the bed the gardeners have to lose the soil with fork and dig the soil about 6 to 12 inches deep. It is better to mix the soil of top and down layers together for better rooting. The selection of a sunny place is the best location for gardening.

The raised garden bed can be of any length or shape according to the location. Normally beds are of 28 to 30 inches high, 4 feet wide by 8 feet long or 4 feet wide by 12 feet long so that you can easily reach the center of the bed without stepping into it. The depth of the bed for rooting of the plants is better up to 6-12 inches.…

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The Benefits of Raised Garden Beds

Building raised garden beds is a great way for new gardeners to get their fingers green for the first time. Easier to manage than traditional beds, raised beds allow you to carry out all of your gardening from the safety of the lawn, or garden path – without having to worry about compressing the soil of your flowerbed underfoot. This can compact the earth around your plants' roots, reducing their contact with the air they need in order to grow.

The earth used in a raised garden bed should be a mixture of soil and compost, removing the complication of 'bad dirt' from your gardening – a problem which faces many gardeners in urban areas. Water drainage is more effective with raised bed gardening, which again, allows plants to breathe easier.

In some areas of the world, such as South America, where the soil saturation is extremely high, raised bed gardening is often the only way you can grow many types of plants.

Plants can be placed closer together, thanks to the improved drainage and aeration raised garden beds can offer, which allows for a greater population of sprouts (and reduced weed growth) in a smaller area. Studies have shown that elevated garden beds can yield between 1.4 and 2 times as many flowers or vegetables as traditional beds.

Resist the urge to overcrowd your seeds, however. Although in a raised garden bed you don't need to allow for places to step while gardening, concentrating too many seeds in a small area will harm your plants' growth.

Apart from the obvious advantage of bringing your garden to you, and reducing the need to bend down when planting, weeding and harvesting, raised garden beds let you manage your sprouts' water, fertilizer and compost more effectively. Nutrition can be directed where necessary, and varied from bed to bed.

Before I began gardening in raised beds, I would suffer terrible bad backs the following day, as a result of bending over a bush for hours on end. Since I built my elevated beds my back hasn't given me any trouble at all.

A carefully designed and well-kept raised planter can perk up even the most drab garden. Raised beds can be made into a shape of your choosing, making them decorative as well as highly functional alternatives to traditional bed gardening. Whether you're a master planter, or a green-fingered green-horn, raised garden beds make a wonderful addition to your garden or allotment.

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