If you want to protect your wooden raised beds from the weather, there are some simple and effective steps you can take. Once constructed, the best solution is to treat them with the right paint or oil finish. It will make sure your beds remain in tip top condition over time and don’t warp or crack.
You might buy pressure treated timber in the first place but most people generally use whatever wood they find handy. This can include old railway sleepers which add a certain chic quality. Even if you use pressure treated, you’ll still need to finish them in something which will offer long term protection.
Why use raised beds?
Raised beds are an ideal way to create a garden and can be used to plant flowers but also split different patches of ground for vegetable cultivation. They are easier to maintain and, assuming you have constructed them properly, deliver good drainage.
The key to longevity is treating these wooden raised beds properly in the first place. There are some great products on the market and you should try to use one of these before you fill in the space with soil. You can do it after but you’ll have a much easier time if you do it before! Good treatment maintains the integrity of the wood. This ensures you have a wonderful gardening plot for a long time to come.
If you have existing beds and need to treat the wood, it’s a good idea to remove the soil and clean the wood before coating. Understandably in a mature garden this might not be possible.
How should I treat my wooden raised beds?
At Owatrol Direct, we recommend a few treatment products, including:
Textrol: This is a penetrating wood oil treatment that can be used for both soft and hardwood. It not only provides protection against mildew but also reduces the natural weathering and impact of UV rays. There are 7 colours available and is simple to apply with wet-on-wet coats. Textrol protects the wood from within, saturating the pores to prevent moisture form entering the wood.
Shed and Fence Paint: If you want more colour choice and an opaque finish, our shed and fence paint comes in 35 different opaque varieties and is perfect for treating raised beds. It’s highly resistant to peeling and flaking and lasts a long time. It’s also guaranteed for five years for horizontal surfaces and 15 for vertical. If you want your beds to have a certain look, there should be one colour among the range to suit you.
Aquadecks: If you’re looking for a penetrating semi-transparent matt finish, this is ideal for either weathered wood such as railway sleepers or fresh, new wood bought from the hardware store. Its advanced UV protection means that your wood colour won’t quickly fade to grey as untreated wood does. It also prevents the cracking and warping that can easily occur with raised beds.
Tropitech: If you want an all in one treatment that’s ideal for the full range of outdoor wood, Tropitech ticks all the boxes. It gives a semi-transparent acrylic finish, protecting against UV damage while preventing damp from getting into the wood. It’s normally touch dry within a few hours and considered fully cured after a couple of days at the most. It has excellent longevity and will require minimal maintenance – up to every 5 years – which is perfect for raised beds.
All our wood treatments are easy to apply. Any one is a suitable product for a variety of raised garden beds. Whether you have constructed them from hard or softwood, they’re new or weathered. If you want your beds to last for a long time and be protected from the elements, the Owatrol range should be top of your list of products to buy this spring.
Featured image credit to Dan Malec