Best Raised Garden Beds – The Essential Buyer’s Guide
We’ve been growing herbs and veggies on raised garden beds for a number of years and we really appreciate their benefits.
Since we like them so much, we feel obligated to present to you some of the best raised garden beds on the market. The following selections are the real deal and you’re really going to get your money’s worth out them.
Best Raised Garden Beds of 2017
Raised garden beds drain well in wet conditions and hold on to moisture in dry weather. This means they work beautifully in arid or mountainous climates.
They allow you to use square foot gardening procedures to improve food production and to grow beautiful flowers with minimal to no weeding. Plus, they use less seed to achieve the yield!
Soil Capacity/Planting Depth
Plant Inn Raised Garden Bed
46 x 46 x 58.5 inches
Approximately 6 inches deep
EGBD 24-48S Elevated Garden Bed
48 x 24 x 32 inches
5.9 Cubic Feet/approx. 10 inches deep
Elevated Cedar Planter Box Standing Garden (24" x 96)
Gardener's Supply Company
96" L x 24" W x 29" H
329 dry quarts of container mix/approx. 10 inches deep
Elevated Cedar Planter Box Standing Garden (24" x 48")
Gardener's Supply Company
48" L x 24" W x 29" H
165 quarts of container mix/approx. 10 inches deep
VegTrug8482 Patio Garden
70" L x 30" W x 31-1/2 H
380 quarts of container mix
EGB 18-48 Elevated Garden Bed
48 x 18 x 32 inches
4.1 cubic feet/10 inches deep
Easy Grow Patio Garden Flower Plant Planter
44.9 x 19.4 x 29.8 inches
31.7 gallons/approx. 14 inches deep
RGBT 48-48S Raised Garden Bed
48-Inch x 48-Inch x 19-Inch
Approximately 12 inches
60053 Raised Garden Bed Kit, 2 Beds, 1 Enclosure
48.2 x 9.6 x 19.9 inches
Single bed 9 inches, when stacked 18 inches
60069 Raised Garden Bed Kit, Pack of 3 Beds
48.8 x 9 x 48.8 inches
Single bed 9 inches, when double stacked 18 inches
REGB 24-48 Rustic Elevated Garden Bed, Unfinished
48L x 24W x 32H
5.4 Cubic Feet/around 9 to 10 inches deep
Raised Bed Kit Double Deep Western Red Cedar with Mortise and Tenon Joinery (Two 3x6)
72 x 36 x 12 inches
6 inches per bed, 12 inches when stacked
Metal Raised Garden Bed Kit
46 x 35 x 12 inches
11 cu ft. of soil/approximately 12 inches
Fir Wood Garden Planter
RPB 18-48 Planter Box, Unfinished
RGB 34-34S Raised Garden Bed, Finished
48"L x 34"W x 29"H
48 x 18 x 19 inches
34 x 34 x 13 inches
Approximately 18.5 inches deep
Approximately 9 inches deep
Approximately 12 inches deep
Why Grow on Raised Garden Beds?
There are many reasons but the two main ones are of course easy maintenance and high accessibility. A rake, spade, and trowel are really the gardening tools you need to start planting and growing on raised beds.
A spade is needed too? Seriously? Okay, a spade is not really “needed” but it’s always good to have one in your gardening arsenal. The upper layer can easily be turned with a spade so we do use it from time to time.
Weeds are a whole lot easier to pull out of a raised bed, so that’s why weeding is minimal or none at all. In most cases, you can just use grass clippings to mulch and prevent weeds from growing until your crops or plants are well set.
1) Plant Inn Raised Garden Bed by Palram
This hybrid of raised garden bed and starter greenhouse impressed the heck out of us thanks to its solid build and great features.
It has a couple of lids so you can conveniently and easily access your plants. You have the ability to lock those lids so that they remain open thus providing you with full access.
Partial lock is possible as well which is useful for providing your plants with sufficient ventilation.
Build quality is good, but it does feel a little unstable after we finished putting it together. However, after putting a few bags of soil in it, the whole thing stabilized and stood like a rock.
The panels are clear and they are tough as nails. Rest assured they’re not going to break easily.
The built quality of Palram’s offering is far superior to another somewhat similar product we bought a couple years back. Now, that one was real flimsy! It didn’t take long for a wind storm to put it out of its misery.
One of the issues we have with Palram’s Plant Inn is that it’s actually a little hard to assemble.
Some users claim that it’s easy to build, but we beg to differ. It took us almost two hours to complete the assembling process.
The unit offers two planting areas and at only around 6 inches or so, they aren’t that deep. Also, the price is bit on the high side.
Still, we like this and would recommend it to anyone looking for a sturdy, first-rate quality raised garden bed/greenhouse.
- Great build quality
- Convenient lids allows full or partial lock
- Tough, clear panels
- Looks good in the yard
- A little hard to assemble
- Quite pricey
- Depth of planting areas aren’t satisfactory
2) EGBD 24-48S Elevated Garden Bed, Safe Finish by Gronomics
Does assembling an elevated garden bed makes you cringe? Hate seeing complex assembly instructions and the need to use a certain number of tools in order to get the job done?
Well, this raised garden bed isn’t 100% assembly free, but it’s darn near close enough. And you don’t even need a single tool to put it together!
The EGBD 24-48S raised garden bed has a dovetail construction which means you can assemble it simply by sliding its pieces together.
The assembling process was so easy; we managed to get this wonderful raised bed up and ready in less than 15 minutes. All the pieces connected smoothly with one another and we couldn’t be happier.
We are certain you’ll feel the same way too once you’ve put it together yourself. And once it’s done, expect to be amazed at its design and construction. This is without a doubt, one gorgeous looking raised garden bed.
The quality of its construction is equally impressive. We didn’t expect otherwise because we knew prior to purchasing that this raised bed is constructed of western red cedar.
Cedar is renowned for its capability in resisting rot. It’s sturdy too. The bad news is like the previous raised bed, this one also comes with a rather hefty price tag.
It’s of course, not as expensive because this isn’t a greenhouse type raised garden bed. However, it’s still quite pricey.
Sturdy construction, easy to assemble and easy on the eyes. The EGBD 24-48S is a mastercraft that will stand the test of time.
If you have some extra cash to spend and you’re in need of the best raised garden bed money can buy, then go ahead and spend it on this model. You won’t regret it.
- Super easy to assemble
- No tool required for assembly
- Very sturdy
- Made of wood material that can resist rot
- A little pricey
3) Raised Garden Bed Elevated Cedar Planter Box Standing Garden (24" x 96") by Gardener's Supply Company
This likeable 16 square feet raised garden bed is just 29 inches high so it’s a fantastic choice for people with back problems. Heck, if you want your kids to start getting their feet wet in gardening, then this bed would do the trick.
Once you’ve done assembling it, you will be pleased with its respectable depth, its construction quality, and how awesome it looks. It’s clear the manufacturer put plenty of care and attention into creating this product.
Assembling the unit is almost as easy as making boiled carrots. We reckon it won’t take you more than half an hour to complete the task.
Construction quality is good with legs constructed of metal and the planter box itself is made out of cedar wood. The box offers about 10 inches of depth so a number of large plants can be grown out of it.
A decent variety of plants can be grown too thanks to its 16 square feet space. This is one of the most spacious raised garden beds around.
On the downside, the price is also quite expensive. We wish it was $20 or $30 cheaper. You know, some friends of ours were really impressed with this thing and chances are you will too.
- A breeze to put together
- Sturdy construction
- Very spacious
- Deep enough for growing large plants
- Easy on the eyes
- Quite pricey
4) Raised Garden Bed Elevated Cedar Planter Box Standing Garden (24" x 48") by Gardener's Supply Company
This is the smaller version. You can expect similar quality elements, but less lengthy and doesn’t cost as much.
5) VegTrug8482 Patio Garden by Vegtrug Limited
Can somebody please let us know why, in God’s name, there aren’t more top-end V-shaped raised garden beds available on the market? The VegTrug8482 is one pretty looking V-shaped planter.
You can take its prettiness to a whole different level if you fill it up with a variety of flowers. Put it on display and if you don’t get any compliments from your guests, well, they need to get their eyes checked!
Of course, if you want to grow fresh veggies and herbs with it, you can do so too. The V-shape construction isn’t purely for aesthetic value; it actually enables you to grow a mixture of veggies in an efficient manner.
For instance, vegetables with deep roots can grow in the middle section of the planter where there’s sufficient depth. Areas around the edges with the V-shape depth are great for growing veggies with shallow roots.
You can harvest a nice mix of vegetables via this arrangement and they’ll look like a gardening work of art too. In case you’re wondering if this raised garden bed is perhaps just pretty but not sturdy, well rest assured it’s as sturdy as it gets.
Unlike the other best raised garden beds, this one isn’t made of cedar wood. Instead, it’s made of plantation grown fir. The build is just as strong and solid, and top it off, putting the whole thing together is a complete breeze.
The only knock on this product is the price. Despite its little-on-the-high-side price tag, this raised garden bed is outrageously good and is simply stunning in person.
- Gorgeous V-shape design
- Planting space can be utilized efficiently due to V-shape design
- A total breeze to assemble
- Highly sturdy build
- A bit pricey
6) EGB 18-48 Elevated Garden Bed by Gronomics
Much like Gronomics’s EGBD 24-48S, EGB 18-48 is a well-made 10-inch deep raised garden bed that’s spacious and almost as easy to put together.
You won’t need any tools to assemble it—just slide the pieces in place and you’re good to go. It’ll probably take you between 15 to 30 minutes to get it done.
It should be pointed out however, that we had a bit of a problem connecting the garden bed’s side rails into their respective slots.
They didn’t slot in seamlessly unlike the EGBD 24-48S, where all the parts slot together without a single hitch.
Another issue is that it teeters a bit even after we added the full amount of soil that the bed is able accommodate, which is approximately 9 cubic feet.
Overall, the EGB 18-48 slightly pales in comparison to the EGBD 24-48S, but it’s still a very decent and reliable raised garden bed. The height is perfect and it’s also easy on the eyes.
- Quick assembly
- Well designed
- Nice to look at
- It’s spacious
- A couple of parts didn’t slide into their slots as smoothly
- Slight teetering even after soil has been added
7) Easy Grow Patio Garden Flower Plant Planter Raised Elevated Garden Bed, Brown by Keter
We are a real sucker for garden furniture with woven basket appearance, and this elevated garden bed by Keter looks real sweet. Instead of wood, it’s constructed of resin that’s not only enduring, but also highly resistant to a variety of weather conditions.
Planting depth is about 14 inches and it comes with its own watering system which features an elevated base located at the bottom of the bed.
There’s a reservoir for containing water within the elevated base, along with a drainage plug on the side of the bed.
Two additional drainage plugs can be found under the garden bed. With this system, you don’t have to water the plants too frequently when you place the bed indoors because the reservoir holds the water, so you just have to keep an eye on the water gauge.
The gauge is for letting you know when you should drain the water from the reservoir—via the drainage plug—and when to top it up.
Of course if you’re using it outdoors, you should take out the plugs, because if it rains, your plants will be drowning in excess water. We found this feature to be very convenient, and it works well enough.
The assembling, however, is not convenient at all. It’s really tough! We are kidding. This is one of the easiest raised garden beds to put together.
You screw in the legs and you’re pretty much done. We dumped gardening soil in it and noticed that the legs wobbled a little. Time will tell if those legs can last.
- Extremely easy to assemble
- Convenient built-in watering system
- Classy woven basket design
- The elevated bed itself seems solid
- Excellent planting depth
- Legs don’t seem sufficiently stable
8) RGBT 48-48S Raised Garden Bed, Finished by Gronomics
Wow, another lovely raised garden bed from Gronomics. As usual, Gronomics came up with yet another homerun of a raised garden bed.
This one is as solid as they come. The build is thick and sturdy, with good depth and it looks nice to boot. Easy, tool-free assembly like Gronomics’s other garden beds so those averse to DIY will be happy as rabbits in a room full of carrots.
- Decent planting depth
- Thick, sturdy construction
- Hassle-free assembly
9) 60053 Raised Garden Bed Kit, 2 Beds and 1 Early Start Vinyl Enclosure by Lifetime
We just recently discovered these remarkable raised garden beds, and we actually plan on buying another set real soon. Or we might go for the 60069 set of 3 beds (see #9 on this list of the best raised gardens).
Each bed has wall about 9 inches in height and if you want a taller bed to avoid leaning too much, you simply stack one on top of the other. Presto! Now you have yourself a garden bed that’s 18 inches high.
A vinyl enclosure is included and it has a zip so you can access or close the opening. There’s only one opening though. Two openings—front and back—would’ve been ace.
The enclosure’s quality is very good and it’s a great addition to the set. It’s nicely made, essential for the protection of your garden seedlings, and can be cleaned with ease.
As far as the quality of the beds themselves, rest assured they are very well made too. They are high-density plastic so superficial concerns such as cracking, peeling, and rotting will likely not occur at all.
The assembling process wasn’t that hard. It’s basically snap-snap, click, but the included instructions were pretty confusing.
Another annoyance is that once you fill the beds up with soil, their sides tend to bend out just a bit.
Stack up the garden beds and snap the enclosure on top, and the unit looks real neat. If the side bends out a bit, it spoils the whole look.
It’s not a deal breaker of course, but it really does take away from the overall appearance.
- Can be stacked to form a taller garden bed
- Top-quality vinyl enclosure for protecting seedlings and plants
- Beds are made out of highly durable plastic capable that don’t crack or rot
- Not difficult to assemble
- Enclosure has only one opening
- Confusing assembly instructions
- Bend out sides once the beds are completely filled
10) 60069 Raised Garden Bed Kit, Pack of 3 Beds by Lifetime
We don’t own this pack but have noticed folks singing mostly praises for it. Quality-wise, it’s probably the same as the pack of 2 beds although this doesn’t come with a vinyl enclosure.
And although you receive 3 beds, we have learned that it’s not advisable for you to stack them all on top of each other or they will get tippy.
You might want to stack two for planting deep-rooted plants, and use the remaining bed for growing beautiful flowers.
11) REGB 24-48 Rustic Elevated Garden Bed, Unfinished by Gronomics
Gronomics’s line of raised garden beds is quite packed with outstanding models, but in terms of look, the REGB 24-48 and the RPB 18-48 are a level apart from the rest.
Sure, the other models look fine, but this unit as well as the RPB 18-48 possess that rugged rough-sawn appearance which we absolutely love!
This is a classy raised garden bed by Gronomics. Same as the others, this one’s fully made of cedar, solid and sturdy as an oak, plus a total cinch to put together.
- Eye-catching rough-sawn look
- Easy assembly
- Very sturdy
12) Raised Bed Kit Double Deep Western Red Cedar with Mortise and Tenon Joinery (Two 3x6) by Timberlane Gardens
These wonderfully crafted unit features boards that are a bit thicker than the usual half inch boards found in other raised garden beds.
They also boast mortise and tenon joinery for easy assembly, and yes indeed, it’s ridiculously easy to put these units together. Literally 5 minutes was all it took for us to set them up.
The material is western red cedar which is great, and we found the construction to be very stable.
The beds can be stacked thus you get 12 inches of planting depth. A terrific product no doubt, but delivery took near 3 weeks.
- Boards are thick and strong
- Stable construction
- A breeze to set up
- Very well crafted
- Can be stacked to double the depth
- Product itself has none but delivery could be faster
13) Metal Raised Garden Bed Kit by Mr. Stacky
Wooden and high-density plastic materials are fine, but when it comes to bang-up durability, you can beat good ol' metal steel.
The steel used to construct this raised garden bed can’t be cracked nor chipped, but if it gets scratched, the mark will remain so keep this in mind.
What about rust? Won’t metal become rusty over time? Well, that’s not an issue because the steel of this raised garden bed kit has been imbued with rust protection coating.
We’ve had this for almost a year and we have yet to see a single mark of rust. Also, the build quality is outstanding. It has been holding up real fine so no problems in this department.
The problem lies with the plastic liner that comes with the kit. The liner has about a dozen holes, and it acts as drainage for the garden bed so obviously you place it at the bottom.
The plastic liner isn’t all that thick and it’s only been less than a year, and already it looks like we have to make the switch with something that’s thicker and offers better durability.
In terms of assembly, it’s simple enough and you don’t need any tools for it. Although made of steel, the unit is actually very light so you won’t have any problems moving it around.
All in all, this product meets expectations. In fact, it may very well go down as one of the best raised garden beds on the market that’s made purely out of metal.
- Durable lightweight steel construction
- Coated with anti-rust protection
- Light and easy to move around
- Simple assembly
- Included plastic liner isn’t durable enough
14) Fir Wood Garden Planter by Trademark Innovations
This sweet looking raised garden bed comes from the same company that sold us a well-designed window bird feeder with suction cups.
Standing at around 30 inches, the fir wood crafted garden bed boasts very favorable height and its depth is pretty respectable too at 18.5 inches.
This is yet another no-tool-needed-for-assembly raised garden bed; the overall quality is all right. If you have the money to spend, then this would be a decent buy.
- Tool-free assembly
- Good height
- Excellent depth
15) RPB 18-48 Planter Box, Unfinished by Gronomics
Here’s yet another tremendous raised bed by Gronomics. This offering also has that eye-catching rustic rough-sawn look—same as the REGB 24-48 unit.
Expect nothing less than first-rate build, design, and ease of assembly. The price is just right too, considering its overall impressive quality. In other words, this item ticks all the boxes.
If you’re looking for an affordable raised garden bed that’s not too tall—less than 20 inches in height—this is the one you ought to drop your money on.
- Very nice on the eyes
- Real solid build
- Easy as pie to assemble
16) RGB 34-34S Raised Garden Bed, Finished by Gronomics
Gronomics offers some of the best raised garden out there, and if you haven’t checked out one of their offerings, you’re missing out.
Like their other models, the RGB 34-34S provides a number of positive points such as A-grade construction, reliably thick boards, quick and easy assembly, plus a remarkably sleek look and design.
As with all raised beds by Gronomics, this one’s crafted using quality western red cedar right here in the USA—the best country in the world.
- Thick, sturdy boards
- Nice, simple design
- Quick assemble
The Benefits of Raised Garden Beds That You Should Know About
The very best thing about raised garden beds, besides their versatility and beautiful garden design elements is the fact that they protect the back of the gardener.
If you have limited space or if you have an arthritic knee or hip, it is much easier to garden at a higher level instead of squatting or kneeling on the ground.
Still too low? Just raise the bed a little higher with an additional level and add in some additional peat moss, compost and vermiculite.
This easy access makes gardening obtainable to all kinds of folks with accessibility issues.
Gardening using these best raised garden beds is easy and eye-catching, even for the gardener in the city with just a porch or a patio.
There are so many options and permaculture garden design possibilities whether you decide to go with just square 4x4 raised garden beds such as the ones by Lifetime—model 60053 2 beds with vinyl* or the 3 beds pack model 60069*.
Or if you choose to, use the curved boards and let your imagination and garden design plans run wild. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination!
The only permaculture garden design element to remember is care of the people, so be sure that the center of the garden bed is able to be reached from all sides.
One of the main benefits of square foot gardening is that no one ever steps on the garden so the soil is not compacted.
Keep this in mind as you are designing your permaculture garden. Raised bed gardening makes it easier to plan a garden design that incorporates companion planting, or guilds as they are known in permaculture.
A guild by definition includes all of the plants and the insects that are involved. The most common example of companion planting is the combination of corn/maize, squash, and beans.
Certain plants when planted near each other promote and sustain each other by attracting helpful insects or by repelling harmful insects.
Using raised garden beds to plant flowers and vegetables presents certain considerations that are different from other gardening methods raised garden beds such as ground-level planting or container planting.
For some gardeners, the advantages presented by raised garden beds make it efficient and useful, while still others feel that it can be too much work.
Raised garden beds can make it easier to work on your plants, especially if you are disabled or would rather not spend too much time bent over.
Proper gardening requires hours of labor weeding, mulching, aerating, and amending. With a raised garden bed, you don’t have to bend down so far to perform all these tasks.
In fact, some of the higher raised garden beds would even allow a wheelchair-bound person to work quite comfortably.
Make sure that your raised garden bed is not more than 4 feet across, so that you can easily reach every plant without having to stretch too far.
Raised garden beds increases the soil temperature, since the sides of the garden bed is exposed to sunlight.
In some areas with short growing periods, raised garden beds can allow you to start planting sooner that you might otherwise be able to.
It is also the perfect method for growing plants that love the heat, such as green peppers and spinach. Raised garden beds also make it more economical to amend the soil.
Since you only need to apply compost and fertilizer to the raised garden beds, you don’t have to use as much as you would if you had to amend an entire ground level garden.
Raised garden beds improve soil drainage, thus preventing roots from getting fungi or being rotted. On the other hand, you may need to water your plants more frequently.
Raised garden beds may require more preparation to start, when compared to container panting or ground level planting.
While a prepared garden bed should be usable for several seasons, some gardeners find that having to dig and create frames is too much hard work—that is if you decided to make your own raised garden bed.
There is no hard and fast rule that dictates which type of gardening method is superior. It largely depends on what works for you personally.
If you do decide to use raised garden beds, just make sure that you avoid using treated lumber or aromatic woods for the bed frames if you are going to be planting produce.
Chemicals from treated lumber can easily leech into the fruits and vegetables, causing them to be contaminated. For flowers and other ornamentals, however, they should serve just fine.
Building Your Own Raised Garden Bed
When you are looking to build your own raised garden bed you will want to find a plan to assist you through the building process.
There are hundreds of raised garden bed design plans online that you can find that can fit your every need.
Generally you will want to ensure that you choose the perfect size bed for the area that you have delegated.
There isn’t a specific way for you to create your raised garden bed; it’s all up to personal preference. However, there are general details that you may want to follow.
1. Cut and assemble your frame.
2. Square up your frame to ensure that the frame maintains its shape.
3. Brace the corners to hold the frame into position.
4. Mark the perimeter where you want the bed to be; generally you should be putting it in a sunny spot to maximize sun exposure.
5. Prepare the soil.
6. Level the frame once the soil has been placed inside.
7. Stake the frame to help the bed to maintain its structure.
8. Fill the bed with more soil and compost until they are at least 2-3 inches away from the top of the frame.
9. Plant the vegetables.
10. Water and mulch the vegetable garden bed.