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I am planning a raised bed vegetable garden for my Southern California backyard. my current design was going to use 3'x6' cedar boxes, 7-1/4 inches high, until I read that that this shallow dirt would not accommodate many deep rooted vegetables. I read that Tomatoes can have 7 foot roots. A raised bed box for that would look like a skyscraper! What depth is required for a raised bed vegetable in Southern California?

  • You should be asking about how tall I want to build them, not how deep the dirt needs to be, because if that's the case you have dirt going to the center of the earth – black thumb Apr 15 at 4:11
  • I live in northern California. I have a raised bed that is only 3 feet tall. Every year I'm able to grow tomatoes. In fact, they're the most prolific bearers of all my plants, often growing out of control. So it looks like the short depth of soil doesn't affect tomatoes. Perhaps the roots just grow sideways if it hits the bottom. – JoJo Apr 15 at 4:46
  • The main point of having a raised bed is to make it easier to work (less bending) and keep you from treading on the soil to compact it. If plants want to grow roots below the original ground level, nobody is going to stop them doing that. If you are going to make the beds from "boxes", you do realize you are supposed to remove the bottom of the box and just keep the sides, yes? – alephzero Apr 15 at 7:47

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