Raised Bed Types
Raised Ground Beds
Raised ground beds are only 8-10 inches in height. These beds are especially suited for children with physical disabilities or adults who prefer to work close to the ground. Ground beds are also used to grow more permanent deep-rooted plants.
Deep Raised Beds
Deep raised beds can be built at a height and width that will provide the disabled gardener easy access from a seated position. They can be built of virtually any material and can be permanent or temporary structures, depending on the needs and desires of the gardener. A border or edge wide enough for a person to sit upon can be helpful for semi-ambulatory individuals. Raised beds can be built in any shape, although most are built in a rectangle.
Terracing and Retaining Walls
Terracing and retaining walls are two ways to put sloped areas of the garden to good use. A retaining wall can be made to the height needed for the individual gardener. Ground space next to the wall needs to be easily accessible to the gardener. Walls are usually made of brick or stone. Terracing involves a series of small retaining walls or raised ground beds forming steps. The retaining wall and terraced garden can give the advantages of both raised beds and ground beds.
Elevated beds are shallow beds, which are raised off the ground on legs. These benches are especially good for gardeners who use wheelchairs because they allow the individual to get their legs under the bench, giving them a comfortable work space. The height from ground level to the bottom of the bed should be as low as is comfortable for the individual. Thirty inches is usually appropriate for most adults. The bed should stand at least eight inches deep and is usually made of wood.