Raised bed drainage - Indoor


This is a two part question. We are getting started on fabricating our raised bed and had a question about drainage. The bed will be inside most of the year other than when we wheel it outside on sunny days in the summer, so it won’t be exposed to rain at any point. Will we still need to add drainage of some sort?

Second, what should we line the bed with before putting in the soil? The instructions say a tarp, but I’ve seen others mention just using landscaping fabric here.


It is important to be able to drain away excess water. While it is theoretically possible to reuse the same water and just replace that lost through evaporation, maintaining a healthy PH balance would start to be tricky.

David Maher

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You must consider drainage ports to ensure there is no collection of stagnant water in your garden bed. If you do have collection of stagnant water in your garden bed, it can lead to the growth of undesirable mold and mildew issues in your garden. Sufficient drainage is an important aspect of the design of any garden bed and it should not be overlooked in the design.

You should know that the construction of the X-Axis tracks is the most important part of the whole assembly process. Please spend extra time to plan out this stage of the construction. Take time and understand the instructions fully prior to starting the work. Ideally the fixed raised bed needs to be constructed upon a sturdy supporting structure.

We suggest that a composite wood product, or a cedar, redwood, cypress and other naturally rot-resistant woods are likely the best materials to use for the supporting infrastructure.

If you do decide to go with pressure treated wood, please ensure that there is a plastic or rubber moisture barrier between your soil and the pressure treated wood to protect against chemical leaching into the soil. Pressure treated lumber contains chromium (bactericide), copper azole (fungicide), and arsenic (insecticide) and these chemicals can be toxic to humans if ingested so it is important to keep pressure treated wood separate from your growing soil.

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Hi Marc,

Thank you so much for the reply. I have a couple follow up questions.

Is it possible that I missed a section about drainage in the instructions for building a raised bed? I see there appears to be a hole in the middle panel, but the instructions do not reference it as a drainage hole.

We are using plywood and intend to use a plastic barrier.


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