A raised bed in the garden performs numerous functions. It keeps the soil warm, enhances drainage, and more. Making a raised bed for cacti also lets you amend the soil so it is perfect for these succulents.
Cactus garden beds allow you to have a wide selection of prickly flora without worrying about foot traffic or pets entering the area. Plus, you can make one out of a variety of easy-to-find materials.
Materials for Cactus Garden Beds
A raised bed cactus garden makes a unique focal point in the landscape. It also allows the gardener to control soil, moisture, and more since these plants are very particular about such things. You can have a huge garden and incorporate larger species like Saguaro, or a smaller, intimate garden filled with diminutive charmers. Just make sure your cacti will tolerate your zone and conditions.
The first step for growing cacti in raised beds is to buy or make a bed. You can find kits readily but a cheaper method is to build them yourself. You can do this out of wood, stone, old brick, and other items. It is a great idea to check the free section of Craigslist or other such sites, where you might find just the right thing that someone else doesn’t want.
Found objects interject a naturalness, playfulness, and even an artsy sense of design. A wooden raised bed cactus garden should be made from treated wood in order for it to last.
Types of Cacti in Raised Beds
If you already have cacti that you will be planting out, make sure the site you select will match their requirements for growing. If you have the bed and now need to select cacti, remember not all cacti love the sun. Tropical varieties need a bit of shade in the middle of the day. Even desert specimens can burn in noon heat.
Next, make sure the plants will be hardy to your zone. If your winter is prone to freezes, there are some cacti that can survive, but not many. It might be best to place them out in containers and bring them in at the end of the season.
Soil must be well-draining. It might even be wise to incorporate sand or other grit to increase porosity. You don’t have to worry too much about fertility as cacti are low feeders.
There are many plants suitable for the raised cacti bed. Some of the larger are:
- Opuntia species
- Claret Cup
- Golden Barrel
- Pipe Organ
- Mexican Fence Post
- Prickly Pear
A raised bed for cacti may only accommodate medium to smaller species. Try:
If you live in a warm region, you can probably broaden your selection much more than northern gardeners. Even cold region gardeners can build a cacti bed, just remember, some should be displayed in containers and brought indoors in autumn.