A seed bed can be used for plants that take a long time to mature - such as hardy cyclamen!
Long before garden centres became the norm for gardeners, most respectable gardens had a seed bed. The seed bed was used for raising many different plants – ornamental and vegetable – from seeds.
are not seen too often in gardens now, because of the popularity of
garden centres and ease of buying reasonable quality plants without
having to go through the actions of maintaining a seedbed.
However, a seed bed is still a good way of raising your own plants, and also a rewarding way in which to take time out from the stresses of modern day living.
The seed bed can simply be a flat piece of ground in a sheltered but well lit place in the garden, or you can make a raised seedbed, by framing it with 6in (150mm) treated timber boards.
The simplest seed bed is an area of flat ground, dug over and raked to fine texture with no large stones. Remove all weeds and roots, tread gently to firm the soil. You have a seed bed. Simple as that!
Where - Any part of the garden that is sheltered and well lit, and not a damp dark area.
When – Seeds are normally sown in spring or summer, but also autumn for some plants
What – You can raise many garden plants and vegetable seedlings in an outdoor seedbed.
Why – It is rewarding. It need not take a lot of time. You can raise many varieties that are available as seeds, but not always available as young plants. A seedbed is a good place to rear plants that take a long time to mature. They can be left in the bed for many months. Slugs and birds can be problems - protect!
By David Hughes