How to build a multipurpose raised bed protective cover

In my last post, I briefly mentioned a deer had come by and had eaten my fall garden down.  Of the two 4 x 8 beds I have, one was almost completely destroyed, but the other was only munched on a little.  I knew that if I did not protect the beds, the following morning, I would have nothing left.  I had to act fast.  But I wanted to build something that would last, protect against the deer, and also when the time came, protect my garden from freezing.

First, I built a frame.

Here is a list of supplies to build the frame:

3 – 4 ft pieces of PVC,  6 – 2 ft pieces of PVC,  4 – 3’8″ pieces of PVC,  6 – 3″ pieces of PVC,  4 – 3/4″ 90’s,  8 – 3/4″ T’s

Below is a  diagram of how the pieces fit together.  The 2′ pieces are the legs and they attach to all the downward facing T’s. (I forgot to add those in the diagram.)  Don’t worry about glueing the fittings, this is not load bearing and it will be fine without glue.  If you are having a hard time connecting the pieces use a rubber mallet to help bang them together.

Okay, so now you have a frame.  For my purposes, I wanted to keep the deer from eating my garden, so I used some plastic fencing I had on hand and covered the frame.  I used zip ties to hold the fencing on the frame.  From personal experience, I know that zip ties will not hold up in the outdoors for more then about 1 year.  If my fencing keeps the deer at bay, I will exchange the zip ties for wire.  Wire fencing or chicken wire could be used in place of the plastic fence, though it would more difficult to work with.

I will cover the entire frame with plastic when the first frost warning for our area is announced.  Also, if you have veggies that need protection from the sun,  put some shade cloth over the frame.  I only made my frame 2′ tall, but if you need it to be taller, since it is PVC, this should not be a problem.  Some couplings and extra PVC should do the trick.

This entry was posted in How to's and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

26 Responses to How to build a multipurpose raised bed protective cover

  1. meemsnyc says:

    Charlotte, what an awesome idea!! I just showed my husband and we both want to put this up around our raised beds next year. We have a squirrel problem, do you think this fencing’s holes are small enough so a squirrel does not get through?

  2. Susan Myers says:

    Your are quite resourceful, and from time to time we gardeners need to be. Good job!

  3. thevioletfern says:

    Nice job! And on such short notice! I don’t have trouble with deer but with the neighborhood cats! They like to use my raised beds in the cover of darkness – not a problem once things are grown up – but a big problem when I’m trying to start seeds. This is a solution. Cayenne works but I have to keep at it, and if it rains … I had hoped to make a hoop house this fall – very similar to what you have done here – but it looks like early spring instead. I will also be planting rue next year – a big turn off for a lot of creatures.

    • Lin says:

      I’d like to share
      Myself and 2 neighbors have motion sprinklers attached to our hoses adjacent to our gardens and NO critters or deer the last 2 summers!
      But love your idea too!!

  4. Great ingenuity. I hope in my new house I can put up nifty stuff like this.

  5. Simone says:

    How do you pull weeds from the bed when it’s covered?

    • Charlotte says:

      Since the cover is made with pvc and plastic fencing it is light enough for me to move by myself. I just remove it to weed and harvest as needed.

  6. Pingback: From Then Till Now - Char's Gardening

  7. Sandy says:

    THis is a very helpful website. I am considering building a raised bed cover. Was the one above moved everytime the gardener needed access to the bed? (wedding, harvesting, etc)

    • Charlotte says:

      Hi Sandy, Yes, I moved the cover whenever I needed to work on the bed. It is rather awkward but not too heavy. I was able to move it by myself, though, it is much easier to move if you have a helper. Hope it works for you!

  8. Sandy says:


    Great just what I require!

    Where do you buy all the pipe work and fittings from.

    Advise please!

    Many thanks


    • Charlotte says:

      The pipe and fittings can be purchased at any hardware store such as Home Depot, Lowes, or Ace.

  9. Jennifer says:

    How do you get in and out of the garden for weeding etc. Do you have a hatch or gate?

  10. K says:

    How much did it cost all together for one of these?

  11. Kevin Davis says:

    Love the cover. How wide is the spacing in the webbing?
    And does it keep the bunnies out?


  12. Pingback: How To Start A Family Garden - Thrifty Stories

  13. Pingback: How To Grow A Family Garden - Thrifty Stories

  14. Pingback: 20 Inspiring PVC Pipe Projects for Gardeners | The Self-Sufficient Living

  15. Pingback: 25 Fun & Creative Uses of PVC Pipes in Your Garden • Gardening

  16. Pingback: Top 20 Low-Cost DIY Gardening Projects Made With PVC Pipes | homedesignfind

  17. Lynne Rymanowski says:

    Adding holes aiming towards the garden and hooking up a hose would be an added bonus

  18. Pingback: Top 20 Low-Cost DIY Gardening Projects Made With PVC Pipes - Bio Prepper

  19. Pingback: 20 Inspiring PVC Pipe Projects for Gardeners | The Self-Sufficient Living

  20. Eric says:

    Cable ties are a great way to attach the screen! Use UV-resistant ties if the cheap ones don’t hold up. These are more expensive, and probably not available at a hardware store, but they are designed for outdoor use and are also more supple and flexible. Example: Panduit PLT-2I

  21. Pingback: 13+ Best DIY PVC Pipe Planters for Your Garden 2019

  22. Pingback: Creative Gardening Ideas With Inexpensive PVC Pipes – Digging In The Garden

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *