How to make a wattle raised garden bed

Creating a wattle raised garden bed is a charming and eco-friendly way to grow your plants. Wattle is an ancient technique that uses woven wood branches to create sturdy, natural-looking structures. Follow this step-by-step guide to make your own wattle raised garden bed.

Materials Needed:

  • Flexible branches (willow, hazel, or similar)
  • Thick, sturdy stakes (1-2 inches in diameter)
  • Pruning shears
  • Hammer or mallet
  • String or twine (optional)
  • Shovel

Step-by-Step Guide

1. Planning and Gathering Materials

  • Choose a Location:
    • Select a sunny spot with good soil drainage for your raised bed.
  • Measure and Mark:
    • Determine the size and shape of your raised bed. Mark the perimeter with stakes or string.
  • Gather Branches:
    • Collect flexible branches that are at least 4 feet long. Willow and hazel are ideal due to their flexibility.
  • Prepare Stakes:
    • Cut thick, sturdy stakes to 2-3 feet in length. These will support the woven sides.

2. Setting Up the Stakes

  • Mark the Corners:
    • Place stakes at each corner of your marked perimeter. For longer beds, place additional stakes every 1-2 feet along the sides.
  • Drive the Stakes:
    • Use a hammer or mallet to drive the stakes into the ground about 1 foot deep, ensuring they are upright and stable.

3. Weaving the Wattle

  • Start at the Bottom:
    • Begin weaving branches around the stakes, starting at the bottom. Alternate weaving in front and behind each stake to create a basket-like effect.
  • Layer the Branches:
    • Continue weaving, adding new branches as needed. Push each layer down tightly to avoid gaps and ensure stability.
  • Overlap and Secure:
    • Overlap the ends of the branches and tuck them securely to prevent unraveling. You can tie the ends with string or twine for added stability.

4. Building Up the Bed

  • Add Soil:
    • Once the sides are woven to the desired height (usually 1-2 feet), fill the bed with a mix of topsoil and compost.
  • Level the Soil:
    • Spread and level the soil evenly within the bed.

5. Planting

  • Plan Your Layout:
    • Plan the placement of your plants considering their height, spread, and sunlight needs.
  • Plant:
    • Plant your seeds or seedlings according to the layout plan. Water them well after planting.

Tips for Success

  • Choose the Right Branches:
    • Use green, freshly cut branches as they are more flexible and easier to weave.
  • Maintain the Bed:
    • Check the bed regularly for any loose branches and tuck them back in place. Replace any damaged stakes as needed.
  • Consider Height:
    • Ensure your wattle bed is high enough to accommodate the root depth of your chosen plants.


Making a wattle raised garden bed is a satisfying project that enhances your garden’s aesthetics and sustainability. By following these steps and using natural materials, you can create a beautiful and functional garden bed that will last for years. Enjoy the process and the resulting bountiful harvest from your new garden bed!

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