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How to build a raised garden bed with composite decking?

Monday, January 10, 2022

When clients are looking to build raised garden beds, the question of materials is typically the first that comes up. It is easier, and cheaper, to use what is available and on hand.

What if that material is leftover from a deck project? In this case, I was wondering if I could use leftover COOWIN from a deck project to build out my raised garden beds?

You can use COOWIN composite decking for the raised garden bed.

Following are some Tips for Using the COOWIN WPC deck for Raised Garden Beds

COOWIN composite decking boards are excellent for use in raised garden bed projects. Though their cost is higher than traditional wood products, they are more prone to bowing and bending. It is a great option for a single season if you already have them on hand.

planter box | natural resistance

Using Composite Wood vs Real Wood for Raised Garden Beds

COOWIN is one of the famous brand names for composite lumber decking material. It looks good, and like natural wood, with rich colors and surfaces, such as 3D embossed wood grain, natural wood grain, and different groove surfaces.

Because it is a composite, it won’t rot, splinter, or fade as real wood does. It doesn’t need to paint. Bugs don’t burrow in it and the sun doesn’t degrade it.

The disadvantage to using COOWIN composite boards is that they will require more support to keep their shape. COOWIN isn’t as dense as wood and it is designed for deck board, where there is lots of support via joists.

In a vertical application, such as for a raised bed, you’ll need to ensure it has adequate support for each of the sides in order to maintain shape.

Real wood, on the other hand, will maintain shape and its natural rigidity means that you don’t need as many supports in order for it to keep the shape and hold back the soil in your beds.

Because real wood does deteriorate over time, every few years you’ll need to evaluate and replace boards when needed. This can be viewed as a good thing or a bad thing depending on the way you look at it.

Some comparison points between COOWIN WPC and Timber, Plastic Stone for reference:

wood fibers | untreated wood

Safety of Using Composite for Vegetable Gardens

Affordable composite decking, like COOWIN WPC, is a safe option for garden beds. Wood Plastic Composite is a type of eco-friendly material made of reclaimed wood fiber and polymers. COOWIN composite deck flooring and composite wood cladding, manufactured with our patented formula and by an innovative dual-screw extrusion process, combine superior performance with the naturalistic looks and textures of real wood.

COOWIN is the first that has adopted Color Streaking and 3D Wood Grain Technology for uncapped WPC products in the industry. Compared with LDPE, HDPE-based composites are stronger and stiffer. It can be used for any application, such as Terrance decking, wall siding, composite privacy fence, handrail, pergola, etc.

When looking at options for your vegetable garden. You should do your research on material types and make a decision that you are comfortable with.

Installation Tips

Before you get started with installing your raised garden bed, when using COOWIN WPC material, you’ll want to keep a few things in mind.

Have a plan.

Sketch out the design of your garden area. Whether you plan on having one bed or many, knowing the size and number of beds you need will help ensure your materials list is accurate.

Plan for water.

We all know that water is crucial to the growing cycle. It makes sense to plan for water before you install your beds. Doing so gives you more options than figuring out you need a watering plan as an afterthought.

While you can water your garden beds by hand, consider whether an automated water system makes more sense. In most cases, having it done for you means you have more flexibility to spend time on other things.

As an added bonus, you won’t have to worry about the garden if you decide to go out of town for the weekend.

Establish a plan for weeds.

Weeds are a fact of life when it comes to gardening, and weeds in raised beds are no exception.

If you are installing the garden bed on dirt, as most will, you may want to consider adding some kind of weed barrier. This simple step may help to save you time season after season by limiting the number of weeds present in your garden.

Of course, it won’t eliminate all weeds, but it sure might help.

Once you have a plan in place, it’s time to install your raised bed.

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