Raising The Bar
Like the quest for a better mousetrap, the world has been waiting for someone to come up with a better raised garden bed. Lisa Singer of Kearny Mesa may just have succeeded.
The beds are enclosed in redwood “bins” with small-grid wire for the floor. The redwood fencing keeps bunnies out, the wire floor prohibits moles from burrowing in from underneath, and snails will find it a long trek up the side of the bins.
Singer, a former lawyer, came up with the idea after her gardener built a raised bed in her backyard that failed miserably. “Basically, all he did was make a mound of dirt with a fence that animals could dig right under,” she said. “We decided to do some research and build one ourselves. We wanted to keep the critters out and make it more attractive.”
She designed the prototype of the Gardens to Gro and installed it in the backyard where neighbors started asking about it. “We realized there are probably people like us who wanted a better raised garden bed.” Lisa and husband Steve started making the Gardens at their furniture manufacturing company, Modular Merchants, in Kearny Mesa and have been refining and expanding the design.
The redwood is treated on the outer side only, making it possible to grow organically. The wire bottom lets water drain, preventing ponding, while the small grid keeps the soil in. There's a trellis in the back of the bins for growing peas, green beans and other vining plants. The Gardens to Gro kits come with 8-, 12-, or 24-inch-high beds, and can be assembled in an hour and a half on any flat surface. Prices range from $1,600 to $2,575. For more information, log on to www.gardenstogro.com or call (858) 278-0650.
– CATHY LUBENSKI