As the weather gets hotter and hotter, many people may be concerned that their plants in metal raised garden beds might not thrive during the scorching days because of metal getting hotter. Even though the assumptions have been circulating over the internet for a long time, let’s find out what is the truth indeed.
Metal conducts heat. It is usually warm to feel when standing in the sun. But can metal raised garden beds cause plants and soil to overheat? On warm days, the soil temperature near the edge of the garden may rise slightly, but is it enough to have any impact on plants?
Like metal garden furniture or fences, metal garden beds can warm up after sitting in the sun for a long time, but may still be safely touched and handled. In fact, at the end of the growing season, when the temperature starts to drop, metal materials will insulate your plants from the soil and keep the soil temperature more consistent.
Let’s See What The Test Said
Before you get anxious about your metal raised garden beds, it is wise to get proof of the impact these mental beds have on the plants in your garden. Once there was a test on how plants behaved in higher temperatures in metal raised garden beds. For the measuring process, a garden was ready with different kinds of plants and vegetables. Some of the plants required warmer temperatures, while others did not. Therefore, if the metal garden bed got too hot, logically, the plant inside was not expected to thrive. However, some different results were drawn – quite surprising ones!
First, the temperature outside was measured, which was quite normal considering it was summer. More precisely, it was 93 degrees, a lovely warm summer day. After that, the temperature of the metal raised garden beds was about 89 and 90 degrees. But then, it was the moment of truth. They measured the temperature of the soil inside the metal raised garden bed. And you would expect to be incredibly hot from the metal and sunshine, but actually, it was a completely different story! In ALL of the garden beds, the soil temperature was below 90 – meaning it was not hotter than the temperature of the flower beds. So, naturally, we concluded that the metal raised garden beds DO NOT affect the temperature of the soil.
What’s more, it is not partial testing or showing what is intended to prove. The garden used has different kinds of plants, flowers, and vegetables with just as different requirements, which grow without any issues, and seem unaffected by the temperatures of the metal raised garden beds. Even though it is true and expected that metal will get warmer quickly when exposed to heat, it does not affect the soil or the growth and development of plants. You don’t have to do any guesswork now that you have the results! If you need more proof, you can also do a quick test that will prove what is already established.
Faster Warming Up of Metal Raised Garden Beds as An Advantage
Since metal raised beds get warmer faster, especially during summer months, you can use this property as an advantage. Plant the edges of your metal raised garden beds with more heat- and drought-tolerant plants like herbs and flowers. The soil around the edges of a metal raised bed will be about 8°F to 10°F warmer than the soil closer to the middle (which will stay about the same temperature as in-ground soil in the warmer months). Put plants that are more sensitive to temperature and drying out in the middle of your raised bed.
Since metal maintains the temperature, your plants will get the warmth that keeps them growing. Moreover, some plants that need warm conditions will thrive and grow faster. In other words, your garden will blossom faster than expected. Therefore, when you opt for a metal raised garden bed, you establish conditions for your plants to flourish faster.
Other Benefits From Metal Raised Garden Beds
Increased plant health
When the soil is heated from the sides, it allows your plants to intake more nutrients leading to better health. Like people, plants need nutrients to stay in good condition, and warm soil creates nutrients. Moreover, the roots become stronger, leading to more vigorous growth.
Prevents increased weed growth
Gardeners know how annoying weed growth can be around beautiful nourished plants. Since metal absorbs heat faster and keeps the sides hot, it reduces weed growth significantly. Namely, it does not mean weed growth will stop altogether, but it will be reduced. Therefore, you will not have to maintain your plants' surroundings very frequently, and your garden can stay amazing for extended periods. It is an incredibly convenient feature for busy gardeners.
If you have invested in metal raised garden beds for your plants, you do not have to worry about them getting damaged during the summer months. In fact, you should use the advantages that metal provides for your garden vegetables and flowers. Tests have shown that a garden can flourish with metal raised garden beds, so you can relax and enjoy the greenery of your thriving plants!