Weed Barriers

Weeds can be one of the biggest problems for gardeners. And unfortunately, these nasty growths cannot be completely avoided. However,
there is, of course, a way of getting rid of weeds. This article will
attempt to help you prevent weeds from destroying your garden.

First of all, if you already have weeds in your garden, get rid of them!
There is no point trying to prevent new weeds if there are already fast-growing ones invading your garden. You can choose to dig them up, chop them, or rake them, but you’ll have to do whatever it takes to eliminate them.

Secondly, if you have shrubs, use them to your advantage! Let them grow so they can protect the soil underneath. They keep it cool and often prevent weeds from growing by choking them even before they can cause any trouble.

Ground covers that can spread fast can be an excellent weapon against weeds. Therefore weeds won’t even get the chance to grow and develop. Some of these ground covers include vinca or hypericum.

Next you should consider options to prevent their growth. Mulch can be very useful in your fight against weeds. Mulch is basically anything that can cover the topmost layer of soil – this can include things of nature such as ground bark and leaves, and even the most unlikely suspects such as newspapers, or even an unused carpet. By covering the soil and keeping it under shade, you are able to prevent any other weeds from growing. Try to cover your soil with up to three to four inches of mulch for maximum effect.

Landscape fabric can also be useful in protecting the soil. “The idea behind landscape fabric is to provide a barrier against weeds and to protect your precious topsoil. In effect, the most natural way to keep your topsoil intact is to allow weed coverage. But if you intend planting an area out in the future the last thing you want to do is weed an area twice – or more.

Laying Landscape Fabric

Weed barriers come in all types and sizes. From the cheap and organic, that can eventually be turned back into your garden beds, to the more expensive landscape fabrics that can keep an area weed-free for years.

Cardboard or Newspaper

Layers of cardboard or old newspaper provide a great organic option for reducing weeds. For newspaper it’s best to lay 5-10 sheets on top of each other directly onto your bare soil, pre-moistened so they sit flat, and then cover with a layer of sawdust or pea straw. The same can be done with cardboard but a single layer should suffice.

Old Carpet

If you’re renovating your home, or have access to quantities of old carpet from your local flooring store, then this option is a very cheap solution to providing a weed barrier. It may not look pretty – especially if your remnants are different styles of carpet – but this can easily be hidden the same way as the newspaper/cardboard idea.

Alas, it’s not the most organic option as you can’t dig the carpet back into the soil – unless they’re wool or hessian based – and you must choose carpets that haven’t been glued down with adhesives.

One benefit of carpet is that you can actually place it directly on top of weeds rather than pulling them up before you lay a landscape fabric.

Weed Barrier

Barring the first two choices there are a myriad of inexpensive landscape fabric options that are easy to source. One such option is this Dewitt Weed Barrier Fabric. It’s a woven polypropylene fabric that conserves moisture and prevents seed germination. These are very common in commercial landscape operations.

These are a great option for most smaller gardens because of the size of the rolls and how easy they are to lay.

Weed Mat

For landscapes that have garden rows that aren’t wide Pro Weed Mat is a great option to lay between them. While it is still a barrier to weed control, weed mats can be used specifically in areas where they are needed rather than as a “blanket” type approach.

Landscape Fabric

Commercial operations tend to use landscape fabric as their source of weed barrier. This is also helpful for larger gardens that have areas beyond the norm. The benefits of Preen Commercial Landscape Fabric, as one example, are the colour choices available. These can tie in with your garden colour scheme or be subdued enough to blend in with the natural look of your garden – and don’t forget the anchor pins.

Certainly the color of your landscape fabric is not the most important attribute but, honestly, most of these products have similar characteristics and price determines the strength and size options.

So, if you’re wanting to save dollars and get an effective product trial small areas within you garden first. A landscape fabric is only as good as its application and what works in one garden doesn’t necessarily work in another.”

Photo source: John Loo

This post came from Gardening Tips ‘n Ideas – Gardening tips and advice.…More at Landscape Fabric | 5 Weed BarrierOptions to Consider

Finally, pull out weeds regularly – this is the key to a weed-free garden. Be consistent and check your garden constantly for any signs of weed growth. Do not wait for them to grow before you pull them out. Pull them as soon as you see them! This is the most important thing to remember to ensure that your garden is free of any damaging weeds.

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