How to Grow Vegetables in Galvanized Raised Garden Beds
How to Grow Vegetables in Galvanized Raised Garden Beds

Find out how these gardeners transformed a corner of their yard into a beautiful vegetable garden on galvanized raised garden beds.

Benefits of Growing Vegetables in Galvanized Raised Planters

Sinks (also known as troughs) are a great alternative to wooden raised planters. Benefits include:

They are easy to use (no construction required).

In terms of cost, they are a good investment because they last for decades.

They also deter burrowing animals: If rabbits are a problem, be sure to look for ones that are at least 3 feet tall.

Used storage tanks can be found at farm sales or on New storage tanks can be purchased at farm stores or some garden centers.

Sockets come in a variety of sizes, shapes and heights. The taller one provides a great option for people with limited mobility.

Raised beds heat up quickly in spring, so you can plant them earlier than ground beds. But they also get hot in summer: tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants love the extra warmth of the soil, but sometimes the metal can be hot to the touch.

How many tank beds do you need?

Polly invested in three 8-foot tanks (for vegetables) and a 4-foot tank (for herbs and edible flowers). Polly does not have a drip irrigation system and prefers to water by hand. "I decided I really wanted to stand there with a hose and check on the garden," she said. Every spring, she mixes a few inches of well-rotted compost into each trough.

How to Lay Galvanized Raised Garden Beds for Vegetables

Lay a layer of landscape fabric.

Put a few inches of crushed limestone on top (a row of large rocks next to it holds the gravel where it belongs).

Fill the bottom of the galvanized storage tank (here are four here: three 8 feet long and one 4 feet long) with about 6 inches of pea gravel and cover with landscape fabric (to keep the soil from washing away).

Finally, fill the tank with a mixture of compost and topsoil. Remove the plug at the bottom of the tank and let the water flow out normally.

How to Grow Vegetables in Containers

Polly also enlisted smaller galvanized tubs and large planting pots as containers to make the most of every inch of sunny space. If you want simplicity, the bigger the container, the better. Larger containers have more volume, so the plants don't need to be watered as often. Plastic pots dry slower than clay pots because water doesn't evaporate from their sides. Polly grows 'SweetMillion' and 'Sungold' tomatoes and compact 'GreenTiger' zucchini in 18-inch black plastic planters. To avoid disease, she rotates her tomatoes between pots year after year.

Vertical garden with galvanized bathtub

Polly uses a 20-gallon galvanized tub as a vertical planter, attached to a black and green fence. Galvanized shelf bars attached to the rail hold double-slot shelf brackets. Each tub has a pair of brackets held in place by additional brackets. Adjustable brackets allow the tub to hang at an angle to help maximize exposure to sunlight. The tub is filled with greens like lettuce, spinach, cilantro, and arugula.

healthy harvest

There were enough herbs and vegetables to feed Polly and her husband. "I cook a lot," she said. "It's so nice to run out into the garden and buy a handful of herbs or edible flowers like nasturtiums. Whatever the season defines our meals."

As she shows off the green beans on her galvanized raised garden bed, Polly says, "The fun part is the harvesting." Today, she's harvesting bushels of herbs and vegetables in the manageable 13 by 30-foot space. Her garden includes:






Zucchini Kale Lettuce

Beet Black Pepper Eggplant Dill Coriander Rosemary Basil Thyme Fennel Lavender Calendula Nasturtium