We frequently build vegetable and herb gardens for clients. Often, they are done in a raised timber or precast concrete block planter because that maximizes the productivity in a small footprint and the improved drainage and soil warming gives a superior growing environment. Even a small vegetable or herb garden can bring you a lot of pleasure and nothing beats fresh produce from your own garden. Herbs can also be grown in pots close to the kitchen door. Doing so greatly increases their usefulness and you can't get any fresher.
PRO LANDSCAPER TIP
Raised beds or planters are also easier to protect from undesirable wildlife by putting barriers on just the bed, not the entire backyard.