How to Use Linseed Oil on a Vegetable Bed


Linseed oil serves as a wood preservative for raised vegetable beds. Growing your vegetables in raised beds means that you don't have to hurt your back digging holes in the soil. It's also easier for you to change the features of the soil. Watering and fertilizing becomes more economical because you can keep them concentrated in the vegetable beds. A wooden box usually houses a raised garden bed. Untreated wood spoils quickly, and linseed oil can preserve it so it lasts longer.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 ounce paraffin wax
  • 1 1/2 cups boiled linseed oil
  • 14 3/8 cups mineral spirits, paint thinner or turpentine
  • 1 double boiler
  • 1 container
  • 1 brush (optional)
  • Newspaper or cardboard
  • Soil
  • Place 1 ounce of paraffin wax on a double boiler and heat it until it melts. Don't heat paraffin over a direct flame to prevent burning.

  • Stir the mineral spirits, paint thinner or turpentine in a separate, unheated container and slowly add the melted paraffin.

  • Add 1 1/2 cups of boiled linseed oil to the mixture and stir. Use boiled linseed oil because it usually already contains some solvents to help it dry faster. If you use natural linseed oil, the surface you coat the mixture on can sometimes remain sticky for weeks.

  • Dip the untreated lumber into the mixture for three minutes and take it out to dry. Otherwise, use a brush to apply a heavy coat of the mixture on the untreated lumber.

  • Line the bottom of the wooden box 1/4-inch deep with newspaper or cardboard to prevent weeds from the ground reaching the soil in the raised vegetable bed. Fill the raised vegetable bed with soil and plant the vegetables.

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  • Photo Credit Michael Blann/Digital Vision/Getty Images
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