Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives - Lawn Care Blog | Lawn Love (2023)

Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives - Lawn Care Blog | Lawn Love (1)

Is your garden caught in the grips of relentless weeds? Your neighbors might recommend landscaping fabric as a permanent weed control solution. But “permanence” is one of landscaping fabric’s many myths.

These nine alternatives to landscape fabric are effective weed blockers, and they’re healthier for your garden. And did we mention money-savers, too? From shredded leaves to the weekly newspaper, you can find many alternatives right in your home or backyard.

In this article we’ll cover:

  • What is landscape fabric?
  • What are the advantages of landscape fabric?
  • What are the disadvantages of landscape fabric?
  • Nine landscape fabric alternatives
    • 1. Wood chips
    • 2. Bark mulches
    • 3. Pine needles
    • 4. Shredded leaves
    • 5. Grass clippings
    • 6. Compost
    • 7. Newspaper
    • 8. Cardboard
    • 9. Burlap
  • There’s more to gardening than weed control

What is landscape fabric?

Landscape fabric is typically made of inorganic materials, such as linen, polypropylene, and recycled materials. The sheet-like fabric often comes in rolls and spreads across the garden area to prevent weeds from sprouting.

There are many different types of landscape fabric. The weed barrier usually comes in individual woven strands of material or as a solid sheet with perforated holes. Landscape fabric’s design helps minimize weed growth while allowing water and air to pass through the soil.

What are the advantages of landscape fabric?

Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives - Lawn Care Blog | Lawn Love (2)

Landscape fabric is a superb choice for gravel pathways or gardens with river rock mulch.

Why? Because small rocks will often sink into the soil, making the soil difficult to dig and handle. Landscaping fabric acts as a barrier between the ground and stones to prevent sinking, and it also makes removing the stones more manageable. Landscape fabric won’t degrade either, so you don’t need to worry about the stones sinking as the barrier decomposes.

Garden fabric also can be helpful in landscaping projects that require erosion control, such as placing the fabric behind a retaining wall to prevent the soil from escaping through the cracks.

A garden with a built-in weed blocker also requires fewer herbicides, a great perk for gardeners who wish to avoid using chemical weed killers.

(Video) Skip the Weed Fabric, Waste Your $$!

What are the disadvantages of landscape fabric?

Many gardeners put landscape fabric into their garden, thinking it’s a healthy solution for their weed problem. But that’s not quite the case. Over the long term, you’ll likely run into the following issues with your weed fabric.

  • Landscape fabric requires regular replacement and is not a permanent weed control solution.
  • Landscape fabric does not decompose in the soil. This can be a good thing when you need a longer-term solution to support your rock pathway, but not so much in a veggie or flower garden.
  • Landscape fabric adds no nutritional value to the ground.
  • Wind can blow soil and weed seeds from neighboring lawns and gardens onto the landscape fabric. The weed barrier will not block any weeds that are growing on top of the fabric.
  • Weeds growing above the landscape cloth will send their roots downwards, which then intertwine with the barrier. Their stubborn roots can make your weeding chores especially difficult.
  • Landscape fabric will eventually clog and block water and oxygen from reaching the soil.
  • Landscape fabric will kill earthworms and many other beneficial insects in the soil by blocking their access to oxygen.
  • Landscape fabric can be detrimental to plant and soil health. Why? Because clogged landscape fabric suffocates plants, and the lack of earthworms hinders soil health. When removing the landscape fabric, you might injure roots that have grown into the weed barrier.
  • Exposed landscape fabric can be unattractive in the landscape.

Nine landscape fabric alternatives

Using landscape fabric isn’t the only answer to controlling weeds. The following nine landscape fabric alternatives are excellent — if not better — weed suppressors that promote plant and soil health. And many of these options will save you a few bucks, too.

1. Wood chips

Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives - Lawn Care Blog | Lawn Love (3)

Wood chips make an excellent mulch around shrubs and trees. The organic mulch breaks down slowly and supplies nutrients to the soil. Landscape fabric isn’t biodegradable and adds no nutritious value to your plants.

Wood chips retain moisture in the soil and help regulate soil temperatures. You can buy wood chips at your local garden center or contact a local tree care company for a wood chip delivery. If you’re lucky, an arborist might even make the delivery for free.

Having a tree chopped down? Ask the arborists if they can toss your tree in the wood chipper.

Where to apply wood chips: This mulch might be a bit too coarse for your vegetable and flower gardens. A 2- to 3-inch thick layer of wood chips can provide weed control around your trees and shrubs. Don’t apply mulch against your plants’ trunks, as this can cause insect and disease problems.

You might have concerns about using wood chips in the landscape, so let’s answer those questions:

Do wood chips attract termites? Wood chips don’t attract termites. But they do provide an ideal habitat for termites that are already present or happen to discover the mulch as they forage. In other words, wood chips don’t emit a smell or other feature that will help draw termites to the wood chips.

Can wood chips spread diseases to my trees? According to the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, wood chips spreading disease to your trees is very unlikely.

Can wood chips deplete my soil of nitrogen? When you apply wood chips as a surface mulch, nitrogen depletion would only occur at the soil’s surface. Nitrogen depletion at the surface can be a good thing because this may be one of the reasons why wood chips hinder weed seed germination. But the depletion is also another reason why you might not want wood chips in your vegetable or flower garden.

2. Bark mulches

Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives - Lawn Care Blog | Lawn Love (4)

Like wood chips, bark mulches suppress weeds, retain moisture, add nutrients to the soil, and help regulate soil temperatures. Bark mulches come in various textures, including bark chunks, bark granules, and shredded bark. Popular bark mulches include cedar, pine, and hemlock.

Bark mulch’s most noticeable features include its deep colors, resistance to compaction, and beauty in the landscape.

According to the Cornell Cooperative Extension, there is some concern regarding fresh or improperly stockpiled bark mulches being toxic to young plants.

(Video) DO NOT USE Landscape Fabric

The extension stresses that bark mulches are most likely to damage plants if the mulch is particularly deep, if many plant roots are near the soil’s surface, or if the mulch particles are small. Bagged bark mulches are usually the least likely to harm your plants because they have likely weathered long enough to remove toxins.

Where to apply bark mulch: The University of Georgia Extension recommends applying bark mulches to vegetable gardens after a nitrogen application. You also can use bark mulch near shrubs, trees, perennials, and annuals.

3. Pine needles

Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives - Lawn Care Blog | Lawn Love (5)

Are needles dropping from your pine trees left and right? Instead of tossing them into the compost, use them as your weed suppressor in the garden. Pine needles retain moisture in the soil, minimize erosion, and add nitrogen to the soil.

There is a misconception that pine needles will acidify the soil. Pine needles are acidic when they’re still attached to the pine tree, but they lose their acidity shortly after dropping from the tree. A layer of pine needles won’t change your soil’s pH.

Caution: Pine needles are flammable. They might not be an ideal landscape fabric alternative if you live in an area susceptible to forest fires.

Where to apply pine needles: A 2- to 3-inch layer of pine needles is safe for your vegetables, flowers, shrubs, and trees.

4. Shredded leaves

Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives - Lawn Care Blog | Lawn Love (6)

It’s essential to remove leaves from your yard. But bagged leaves will only take up space in the landfill and remove nutrients from the environment. Take a more eco-friendly approach and use shredded leaves as a weed barrier in the garden.

Shredded leaf mulches minimize soil compaction, retain soil moisture, limit weeds, and add nutrients to the soil.

You don’t want to use whole leaves in your garden. Whole leaves won’t decompose as quickly as shredded leaves, and they create a mat that prevents water from reaching the soil.

Shredding leaves is an easy DIY task. Here are three options:

  • Run your lawn mower over the leaves. A bag attachment can make collecting the shreds especially easy.
  • Use a leaf vacuum mulcher to collect and shred the leaves.
  • Place the leaves in a large, clean trash can and then emerge your string trimmer or weed wacker into the bin.

Where to apply shredded leaves: Apply 3 to 4 inches of shredded leaves to your shrubs and trees and 2 to 3 inches to your flower and garden beds.

5. Grass clippings

Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives - Lawn Care Blog | Lawn Love (7)

Your grass clippings are a nutritious mulch for your lawn, and they’re a good mulch for your garden, too.

(Video) ELIMINATE Weeds | Landscape Fabric done RIGHT

Similar to throwing away leaves, bagged grass clippings also take up space in the landfill. Instead, decompose the grass in your compost bin or create an effective weed barrier around your fruits and veggies.

The Colorado State University Extension recommends not to mulch with grass clippings that you’ve treated with herbicides within the last two weeks. Otherwise, you risk harming your plants. You also want to avoid mulching with diseased grass.

Where to apply grass clippings: Apply this weed blocker to your trees, shrubs, and gardens. Do not apply more than 1 inch of grass clippings at a time. Otherwise, foul odors may develop. Once the grass layer is dry, you can add more grass. Wet grass can mat together and prevent water from reaching the soil.

6. Compost

Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives - Lawn Care Blog | Lawn Love (8)

Compost is a nutrient-boosting mulch that enhances soil health –– but that doesn’t mean you should be tossing your banana peels and lemon wedges in your garden. You want to use compost that’s fully decomposed before adding it to your garden beds. Food scraps that haven’t decomposed can attract pests and even damage your plants.

Compost is a great insulator during winter and spring. The organic matter helps your soil retain moisture, blocks weed growth, and adds a steady supply of nutrients to the soil.

Where to apply mulch: You can spread compost mulch just about anywhere in your landscape. Add 1 inch of compost to your flower beds and vegetable garden and 2 inches of compost under a tree or shrub. Remember not to spread the compost too close to the plant’s stem or the tree’s trunk.

7. Newspaper

You might not read the newspaper anymore, but you can still look forward to it being delivered. Newspaper is the gardener’s secret tool to smothering weeds. A few layers of newspaper can even smother large areas of grass in a process called sheet mulching.

Don’t worry –– newspaper ink won’t leach toxic chemicals into your soil. A majority of newspaper ink is made of soy, which is safe for your edible plants. Don’t use magazine paper or the colorful, shiny inserts in the newspaper, as they aren’t safe for your soil.

Where to apply newspaper: Your biodegradable newspaper mulch will need to be four to eight sheets thick to block sunlight from those eager weed seeds. Use newspapers where weeds are a problem, including around trees, shrubs, flowers, and veggies.

Once you’ve placed the newspaper, lightly water the newspaper with the garden hose to help the layers stick together. Then, sprinkle a layer of mulch on top of the newspaper, such as grass clippings, compost, or shredded leaves.

8. Cardboard

Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives - Lawn Care Blog | Lawn Love (9)

Your order of gardening tools just arrived at the front door –– why not put the cardboard box to good use in the garden, too?

After removing all the tape, stickers, and nonbiodegradable materials off the cardboard, you can use it as a biodegradable landscape fabric alternative in the garden –– and the earthworms will love it!

Where to apply cardboard: Lay two layers of standard cardboard wherever weeds are causing you trouble. If you’re working with extra-thick cardboard, one sheet is enough. Wet the cardboard to hold it in place and add a layer of organic material on top.

(Video) Using LANDSCAPE FABRIC to KILL Bermudagrass | Edible Landscape Ep 4

9. Burlap

Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives - Lawn Care Blog | Lawn Love (10)

Burlap is an alternative weed barrier that looks and functions similarly to traditional landscaping fabric. The alternative fabric blocks weeds from growing while being porous enough for air and water to pass through.

Also known as hessian or jute, burlap is made of jute plant fibers, but it also can be made from other plant materials, such as hemp.

Remember to use natural burlap in your garden instead of synthetic burlap. Synthetic burlap is often used for upholstery because it doesn’t rot or smell. It’s typically made of polypropylene or polyester, and isn’t ideal for your plants.

Unlike many alternatives in this list, burlap isn’t sitting on your doorstep. You’ll likely need to plan a trip to the store for this one or shop online. When it arrives, you will have two weed barrier options — burlap and cardboard!

Where to apply burlap: Burlap is safe to use around your trees, shrubs, and gardens.

There’s more to gardening than weed control

When weeds are running amok in your garden beds, landscaping fabric can sound like a great solution. It blocks those weeds from growing while still allowing the soil access to air and water.

But your garden needs more than weed control. Landscaping fabric adds no nutritional value to the soil, and it doesn’t decompose. And over time, the fabric can be detrimental to your soil’s health. Biodegradable alternatives like shredded leaves, cardboard, and compost are healthy foods for the soil –– and the hungry earthworms!

Landscaping fabric can be a superb addition to a gravel mulch bed or pea gravel pathway because the fabric helps prevent the stones from sinking into the soil. Laying landscape fabric might work up a sweat, but the barrier will later come in handy when you need to remove the stones from the landscape.

Need help with your landscape fabric alternative? Hire a local lawn care professional to spread the wood chips, shred the leaves, or mow the lawn so you can gather the grass clippings. A professional also can help you install a new garden bed in the landscape for your next plant project.

Main Photo Credit: Malcolm Manners | Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives - Lawn Care Blog | Lawn Love (11)

Jane Purnell

Jane Purnell is a freelance writer and actor in New York City. She earned her B.A. from the University of Virginia and enjoys a warm cup of French press coffee.

Posts by Jane Purnell

(Video) Best Weed Barrier in 2022 - How to Choose the Best Weed Barrier for your Plants?


What is the best landscape fabric to use under gravel? ›

Non-Woven. Typically made from polyester or polypropylene, non-woven landscape fabrics are best suited for preventing weed growth in rock or gravel paths or beds. Non-woven landscape fabrics are less permeable than woven options, so they will prevent water and nutrients from getting to the soil below.

What can I put on top of landscape fabric? ›

Mulch will help keep weeds down in addition to the fabric while covering the landscape fabric, providing organic nutrients to the soil and beautifying your yard. Spread mulch evenly around shrubs and plants as deep as 3-inches to cover the landscape fabric and beautify your garden.

Is it OK to put landscape fabric around trees? ›

Rating: Woven landscape fabric is an excellent weed barrier around trees and shrubs. It's also a suitable choice for flower gardens that don't need new plants often.

What is better than landscaping fabric? ›

Pine needles, grass clippings, and shredded leaves are free alternatives to landscape fabric. They're also environmentally friendly and easy to spread in your garden and flower beds. Pine needles, mulched leaves, and recycled grass clippings prevent soil erosion, hold onto moisture, and enrich the soil with nitrogen.

Can I use plastic sheeting instead of landscape fabric? ›

If you're using landscape fabric simply to prevent weed overgrowth, yes, you can use plastic sheets as an alternative to landscape fabric. However, if you want to use this product under mulch like gravel, rocks, or other hardscaping material, you're better off sticking to landscape fabric.

What is the longest lasting landscape fabric? ›

Amagabeli Weed Barrier Landscape Fabric

Another unique feature of this fabric is that it is long-lasting and durable. Unlike the nonwoven landscaping fabric, this cloth was made using high density woven needle that helps conserve soil moisture.

Do professional landscapers use fabric? ›

Landscape fabric, otherwise endearingly known as weed fabric is one of those things that get us landscape professionals up in arms. Yes, it does prevent weeds (but only for a time).

What is the difference between landscape fabric and geotextile? ›

Landscape Fabric limits weed growth. Geotextile fabric stabilizes the soil. Weed barrier can help retain moisture in the soil.

Does it matter which side of landscape fabric goes up? ›

Landscape cloth is like a thin rug. The slightly shiny side is meant to face up; the duller fuzzy side to face down, because that adheres well to the soil.

Can I use an old sheet instead of landscape fabric? ›

A free, biodegradable alternative to landscape fabric is to use simple old cardboard. The idea is derived from the concept of sheet mulching. In permaculture, sheet mulching can be done to reclaim an area of land that might have been weedy or even covered with grass.

Can I just put landscape fabric over weeds? ›

Can I Put Landscape Fabric Over Weeds? Yes, you can. Synthetic landscape fabrics provide a physical barrier to weeds yet allow air, water and nutrients through to plant roots. Spread the fabric over bare soil around trees and shrubs; overlap several inches of fabric at the seams.

What is the best thing to put around the base of a tree? ›

Mulching around a tree is a must. Mulch can be more than just wood chips—shredded bark, pine straw, and even gravel also work well. Use the same type and color of mulch throughout your landscape to create a unified aesthetic.

Does landscape fabric grow mold? ›

Even companies that sell landscaping fabric caution against using plastic because it doesn't allow plants to breathe, inhibits proper drainage and creates an environment for fungus, mold, bacteria and rot.

Is it better to use landscape fabric or plastic? ›

Plastic is better for killing weeds and retaining moisture in dry soil than landscape fabric. However, landscape fabric is better suited to keeping weeds away from an area while allowing water to flow freely. Landscape fabric is more durable and will last much longer than plastic sheeting.

Is cardboard better than landscape fabric? ›

Landscaping fabric lasts longer than cardboard, but it prevents plant roots from properly penetrating the soil. Cardboard breaks down, but it only acts as a temporary base layer for mulch beds. A better alternative to both of these options is using a 4″ layer of mulch throughout your garden.

What is the best low maintenance landscaping? ›

Succulents and gravel are a low-maintenance match made in heaven. Cimino often incorporates succulents, which require significantly less maintenance compared to other plants, but still offer a vibrant pop of green. Succulents also give your landscaping a sculptural quality that you can't get with regular grass lawn.

What is the best material to use to prevent weeds? ›

Mulch Your Beds

An effective and natural option to prevent weeds from taking over your garden is through the use of mulch. Apply a thick layer of organic mulch approximately 2 inches deep in the garden area – take care to avoid the base of individual plants and shrubs.

What to put under rocks to stop weeds? ›

Landscape fabric creates a barrier between the rocks and soil. When it comes time to remove the stones, you can quickly shovel them off the fabric instead of digging them out of the ground. The fabric also prevents weeds from cropping up between the small stones.

Will black plastic keep weeds from growing? ›

Use of Plastic in Farming

Black plastic mulch and landscape fabric are also well-known synthetic covers for suppressing weeds, conserving soil moisture, raising soil temperatures, and increasing crop productivity (Kasirajan and Ngouajio, 2012).

How long does polypropylene landscape fabric last? ›

s it's good for 10 years . It may last longer depending on well it's covered. Remember, it is designed to be covered with mulch or stone.

How often should landscape fabric be replaced? ›

But it's normal to change landscape fabric every 2 to 3 years. Newer products have reinforced materials so that these landscape products could last for decades with proper care. If the area is looking chaotic with lots of weeds sprouting, the landscape needs to be replaced.

Is it OK to double layer landscape fabric? ›

Double layering your landscape fabric on your garden is never a good idea. It contributes to unhealthy soil by preventing water, air, and nutrients from reaching the soil. Additionally, weeding is tedious and burdensome when the unwanted plants grow from your mulch.

Will landscape fabric keep dirt from washing away? ›

Landscape fabric, the right kind, is a great stabilizer for the soil to help prevent the erosion of that fill sand or fill dirt or whatever you're putting in between your pavers as you're setting that together from that washing away and eroding way that stability,” Kemper says.

Do you put mulch on top of landscape fabric? ›

Our answer – No. We do not recommend putting landscape fabric underneath your mulch for the simple reason that it usually causes more problems than any benefit it provides. For one, the fabric blocks the transfer of beneficial microorganisms from passing through that layer of soil.

Which is better woven or nonwoven geotextile? ›

Major Differences Between Woven and Nonwoven Geotextiles

Woven geotextiles are an excellent choice for reinforcement and stabilization applications, while nonwoven geotextiles are great for filtration, separation, and drainage applications.

Can roots grow through geotextile fabric? ›

Controlled experiments (Miljostyrelsen, 2003) with a variety of vegetable plants have shown that geotextiles only impede and do not prevent penetration of roots.

Can plants grow through geotextile? ›

This kind of geotextile will allow the soil to breathe and allow both air and water to pass through its construction, allowing the growth of the desired plants, reducing evaporation and minimising water needs.

Should you put sand under landscape fabric? ›

Most people find landscape fabric very beneficial to their garden. When they lay it down underneath decorative elements like sand and rocks, they don't have to worry about weeds growing up for years. The key to preventing weed growth on top is to keep the rock or sand clean.

What goes first edging or landscape fabric? ›

When you install your landscape edging, you'll need to dig a trench for it. Wrap the extra landscape fabric around the bottom of the edging material before sinking it into the trench. The edging will secure the landscape fabric.

Does water go thru landscape fabric? ›

Permeability - At the store, landscape fabric usually can be found in two forms: 1) a woven fabric created by weaving thin strips of plastic and 2) a spun fabric created using polyester fibers. These landscape fabrics are somewhat porous in both cases, meaning they allow water and air to move through.

Does laying down newspaper to prevent weeds? ›

Newspaper works great as a weed barrier. Make sure soil is moist before putting down newspaper. Lay several sheets (or a small section) down on your garden paths, and apply a thick layer of mulch on top. In windy locations, use landscaping staples to anchor the paper in place.

Does cardboard under mulch attract termites? ›

1) Newspaper and cardboard sheet mulches can become pest havens. Termites were found to prefer cardboard over wood chips as a food source, and rodents such as voles often nest underneath mulch sheets.

Is newspaper better than landscape fabric? ›

Landscape fabric and newspaper both provide the benefits of a weed-suppressing mulch in your garden beds, but selecting the right one depends on your needs. Although fabric lasts longer looks neater, sometimes recycling your old newspaper into mulch is the better choice.

Do I have to dig up grass before laying landscape fabric? ›

Remove All Vegetation

Dig out all weeds, grass, and other vegetation, using a garden hoe, shovel, or other tool. Dig deep enough to get the roots; if you miss the roots, some plants can spread even when covered with landscape fabric.

Do I need to pull weeds before landscape fabric? ›

Can you put landscape fabric over weeds? Yes, most definitely, but an even more effective method of weed control is to remove the weeds before laying the cloth. An alternative is to apply the material directly to the weeds and cover the fabric with an inorganic mulch like gravel or small stones.

How do you permanently stop weeds from growing? ›

Using Bleach to Kill Weeds Permanently

Apply one cup of bleach, undiluted, to the afflicted area. Wait until the weeds turn brown before pulling them out of the ground. Run water around the area to flush the bleach, especially if you are trying to grow plants or grass in that area.

Why do people put bags around bottom of trees? ›

Tree-planting crews install watering bags to give trees a good start and to use water efficiently. A new tree doesn't have a large enough root system to collect sufficient water from the surrounding soil. The bag places water directly where there are roots, near the trunk.

Should you put rocks around the base of a tree? ›

Rock Beds Around Trees

Landscaping/mulching with rock substantially decreases the amount of water needed to support vigorous tree, shrub, plant, and grass growth. Spreading small rocks around trees serves as an inorganic mulch, preventing weed growth, regulating soil temperature, and retaining moisture.

What are the cons of landscape fabric? ›

The cons of landscape fabric

Landscape fabric requires regular maintenance and replacement. Many of landscape fabric's benefits, such as allowing air and water into the soil, will worsen over time. Soil and weed seeds from neighboring lawns and gardens can accumulate above the landscape fabric.

Does landscaping fabric hurt worms? ›

Earthworms don't like it

Although the fabric may not kill the earthworms, it drives them out, which is no good for your soil or plants. Earthworms help aerate the soil by digging tunnels underground, and they help compost organic material, which is necessary for healthy soil and plants.

What landscape fabric do landscapers use? ›

Woven landscaping fabric is the most commonly used type. It's typically made from polypropylene or linen fibers that are woven together to create a durable, semi-permeable material.

What works better than landscape fabric? ›

Best Landscaping Fabric Alternatives
  • Wood chips.
  • Bark mulches.
  • Pine needles.
  • Shredded leaves.
  • Grass clippings.
  • Compost.
  • Newspaper.
  • Cardboard.
17 Jun 2022

Which is better black plastic or landscape fabric? ›

However, if you want to use this product under mulch like gravel, rocks, or other hardscaping material, you're better off sticking to landscape fabric. Black plastic is only meant to be used for a few weeks or so; it will break down faster when exposed to the elements under mulch.

Is landscape fabric Really Necessary? ›

Landscaping fabric generally works as a weed barrier for a year or less before its usefulness starts declining. In fact, and according to the University of Florida, its long-term use can negatively affect soil and plant health and is best used where ornamental plants aren't growing like pathways or around mailboxes.

Can cotton be used as landscape fabric? ›

Beware that many fabrics are plastic blends and using them in the garden may result in tiny plastic fragments getting into the soil. Look for 100% cotton, linen, hemp, wool. This product seems like a good idea.

What fabric do I use to prevent weeds in my garden? ›

What is landscape fabric? Landscape fabric is a geotextile typically made of polyester, linen, polypropylene, or recycled materials. It's primarily used around vegetable gardens, flower gardens, shrubs, and trees to block weed growth while still allowing water and air to pass through to the soil.

Is there a right and wrong side to landscape fabric? ›

Landscape cloth is like a thin rug. The slightly shiny side is meant to face up; the duller fuzzy side to face down, because that adheres well to the soil.

Does landscape fabric attract termites? ›

Placing landscaping fabric down before you install the decorative rocks creates a less suitable environment for termites. Subterranean termites build tunnels from the dirt to nearby buildings.

Why are weeds growing through landscape fabric? ›

Weeds will poke through any openings you left or created in the fabric, though. Organic matter will build up over time above the landscape fabric — as the mulch decomposes — and weeds will start to grow above the fabric. These weeds will be easy to pull but you still will need to weed the bed.

How do you use cardboard instead of landscape fabric? ›

Completely cover the ground with the cardboard except where there are plants that you plan to keep. Wet down the cardboard as you go to keep it in place and to shape it around obstacles. Add a weed barrier that is permeable to water and air, cardboard boxes are ideal.

What to put under gravel to prevent weeds? ›

Lay Landscape Fabric Beneath your Pebbles

If you've recently gotten rid of weeds beneath your pebbles, you don't want them to come back. One of the best barriers against weed growth is permeable landscape fabric, which allows water to reach the soil, but keeps weed seeds from taking root.

What can you put down so weeds don't grow through? ›

Mulch Your Beds

An effective and natural option to prevent weeds from taking over your garden is through the use of mulch. Apply a thick layer of organic mulch approximately 2 inches deep in the garden area – take care to avoid the base of individual plants and shrubs.

What is the best ground cover for weeds? ›

Mondo Grass is one of the best ground covers that kills weeds because it has a vigorous growth habit and spreads easily. Growing across the United States in USDA hardiness zones 6-10, this dwarf shrub prefers full shade to part shade for best results.


1. Never Weed Again! Our Landscape Fabric Explained
(You Can't Eat The Grass)
2. The Best Drought Tolerant Lawn Alternatives 🛋️
(Luke Youtuber)
3. Front Yard Landscaping Project on a Budget
(Lawn Care Life)
4. Cheap and easy weed control- stop using landscape fabric, weed block or plastic for gardening!
(Homestead Bandwagon)
5. MULCH & BARK | What Your Landscaper Is NOT Telling You!
(Mike Andes )
6. A front yard makeover using cardboard instead of landscape fabric
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Kieth Sipes

Last Updated: 04/01/2023

Views: 5648

Rating: 4.7 / 5 (47 voted)

Reviews: 86% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Kieth Sipes

Birthday: 2001-04-14

Address: Suite 492 62479 Champlin Loop, South Catrice, MS 57271

Phone: +9663362133320

Job: District Sales Analyst

Hobby: Digital arts, Dance, Ghost hunting, Worldbuilding, Kayaking, Table tennis, 3D printing

Introduction: My name is Kieth Sipes, I am a zany, rich, courageous, powerful, faithful, jolly, excited person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.