In general, a bare minimum of 6 inches is recommended by the Cornell Extension Services. More may be necessary if the existing soil at the site is poorly drained or sandy. If a vegetable garden is intended, the Texas AgLife Extension Service recommends 12 to 18 inches of depth.
Regardless of other factors, the Cornell Extension Services suggests limiting retained bed height to under 3 feet. This allows gardeners to tend the beds more comfortably.
Optimal depth of a raised bed depends on the planned plantings and the intended site, but Cooperative Extension Services agree on a range of 1 to 3 feet for the best results.
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