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Talkback: Wet soil

Hello, I urgently need expert advice. Christmas is fast approaching and my present this year from my mad keen gardening Dad will be a set of 1m square raised beds. I have to decide if I want to choose wood (not chemically treated as I dont want nasty toxic chemical preservatives in my veg)or recycled plastic. I am leaning towards plastic unless advised otherwise as we are renting at the moment and I want to take my 'presents' with me when we eventually leave. Most importantly, which is best for growing? Also if I go for plastic, is one colour better than another? I plan to have 2 out of my 4 raised beds double height for root veg. All advice welcomed.
Many thanks. Maple de Well


  • My garden has a high water table and I want to plant climbing plants and flowers around the narrow patio border, which gets all the rain run off and doesn't seep away easily (boggy soil). Any ideas for suitable plants. Are there any that will drink up this excess water? By the way I am a novice so don't answer too technically.
  • for Maple de Well
    I started growing veg in the garden again this year using 15cm raised beds.I have two three meters long,one two meters,one at one-and-a-half(which houses the strawberries).these are all one meter wide.Along a fence I have a four meter run by half meter in which I have just planted Autumn Bliss rasberriies for next year.I filled all the beds with a generous amount of garden soil but mostly with bought compost specially mixed for vegetables.Before I filled with the compost I dug over the base to loosen the soil for good drainage,which is a must.
    I was late and it wasn,t till July before I planted brussel sprouts,sutton broad beans,minicole cabbages,purple sprouting brocole,carrots and tomatoes.
    I can tell you I was amazed at the speedy growth of everything!We had masses of strawberries and we,ve just had the last of the carrots and cabbagesand the brussel sprouts should be ready for Christmas.
    Two things to be wary of.
    2.white butterflies.
    I use slug pellets and I,ve got some fine netting for next years crop.
    I,ve used green plastic raised beds to blend in with lawn and other plants.
    Good Luck!
  • Fuschias, Fuschias Fuschias! You can practically grow them in water...they love it. I'm not an expert and I'm sure there are many other plants out there to suit your garden. Have you thought about a soakaway? It involves a lot of digging, about 3ft in depth to be honest. Dig out the ground where you are growing, but dont forget to save the top 18inches of soil for backfilling. Once you have dug out the area place stone chippings in the bottom 18inches, then top up with the saved topsoil. This should help your drainage problems no end!
  • To print of the 'Wet Soil'article I ended up with 7(seven) pages. could you please revise your print article facility. Otherwise a great service.
  • In reply to Maple de Well I would suggest recycled plastic.(Google Linkabord) Wood needs regularly treating with non toxic preservative , not easy in situ and plastic planks are hollow which provides some insulation, and certainly more likely to withstand uprooting and moving. Having recently purchased two 2M x 1M units, the 1M sections make life easy to relocate them. Doubt that colour will make any difference to the produce, it's a matter of personal taste, mine being natural green. Hope that helps.
  • we have a border that is very wet in winter and rots off bulbs, its clay like and has poor drainage due to an underground stream that rises when it rains. any planting suggestions?
  • help,i'm not sure what to do with a strip of garden,well its more of a border, its got peiris, azealia,ferns and a peony,its covered with a weed supressing fabric and slate. but the soil ,on inspection has turned into clay. what can i do to improve this soil ,as it can't be much good for the plants,they are looking ok but not growing much. any advice would be great!
  • Hi, I am new to the gardeners world website, this being my first posted comment. I was overjoyed recently with the news that my name finally came up trumps and I got my allotment plot! I am in the Manchester area and like most areas at the moment the weather seems to be against my ever move. My plot has been neglected and is very overgrown, but my main worry at present is how to rid my plot of cooch grass...any help would be most welcome.
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