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How to Prepare a Garden Bed for Vegetables

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A raised bed looks great and can be made to suit any size of garden; see our guide “How to Make a Raised Garden Bed”. Follow this guide to prepare your bed for a high yield of vegetables.

Step 1

Fill Bed with Soil

Fill Bed with Soil

Fill the raised garden bed with high quality topsoil to a level about 3 inches from the top of the frame.

Step 2

Remove Stones & Twigs

Remove Stones & Twigs

Most commercially available topsoil will have stones, twigs and litter, which will need to be removed prior to any seeding. Rooting vegetables such as carrots and parsnips are particularly sensitive to stones in the soil. A carrot root will split into 3 or 4 separate roots if it encounters a stone as its root grows downwards. Rake the bed to remove as much as possible and leave just the soil.

Step 3

Add Compost

Add Compost

Pour a 2 - 3 inch layer of peat free compost on top of the soil. This will act as a soil lightener and enricher as plants are added, and it also produces a more appealing surface finish.

Step 4

Smooth Top of Bed

Smooth Top of Bed

Rake the compost to a smooth finish and remove any large lumps that may have come in the compost. Your raised bed is now ready for planting. You can grow almost any plants in raised beds such as soft fruits, vegetables, herbs, and small trees and shrubs.