Weed is a curse for gardens. Usually, gardeners take various measures to control weeds. One of them is landscape fabric. It helps the necessary plants to grow without any hassle and prevent weeds.
You may not have much idea about this and are a little bit confused about whether to use it or not!
So, In this content, we are going to talk with you about what is landscape Fabric!
Table of Contents
- What is Landscape Fabric?
- What is Landscape Fabric Made of?
- Types of Landscape Fabric:
- What is Landscape Fabric Used for?
- Should I Use Landscape Fabric?
- Pros Cons of Landscape Fabric:
- How Much is Landscape Fabric?
- Where to Buy Landscape Fabric?
- What Can I Use Instead of Landscape Fabric?
- Final Words
What is Landscape Fabric?
Landscape fabric is a textile material that is used to control weeds. It works by inhibiting their exposure to sunlight.
Normally, this fabric may be placed near desirable plants, covering areas so that weed can be resisted.
What is Landscape Fabric Made of?
In general, landscape fabric can be made from synthetic or organic materials. It also can be made from recycled sources. These fabrics are constructed from woven fibers or available as a solid sheet with some perforated holes to allow water to soak.
Some types of landscape fabric often offer UV protection to maintain the life of the fabric. Also making materials differ with types of landscape fabric.
Types of Landscape Fabric:
There are different types of landscape fabric. You can use any type on your demand. Let’s know about some of these-
If you have little idea about landscape fabric, you must hear about Woven landscaping fabric. This most commonly used landscape fabric is typically made from polypropylene or linen fibers that are woven together to create a long-lasting material.
As its small holes allow Woven both water and nutrients to sweep through to the earth. It prevents weeds from growing up toward the sun.
This is best for weed control fabric around trees and shrubs or in flower beds.
The variety of colors also make this fabric more attractive. You can find Woven fabrics in black, green, or a brown, natural burlap color.
There are also some options available that offer some innate ultraviolet (UV) resistance or have been treated to be UV stabilized so that they keep up under the sun.
All types of landscape fabric can’t prevent weed growth in rock or gravel paths. That’s why you need to choose the right one. And Non-Woven fabric can help you in this regard. As this type is less permeable than the woven option, it can prevent water.
These fabrics are made from polyester or polypropylene, so they offer more durability. Upgraded versions of Non-Woven landscape fabric are used beneath stone pavers or other big-scale hardscaping.
Spun is a particular version of non-woven fabric which is made from layers of bonded polyester fibers. This is extremely durable. The negative part of spun is its rip & tie are heavy-duty types.
This extremely durable fabric’s thickness depends on it broadly and makes it viable for many purposes. The thinner versions of spun fabric spun-bonded nature of the material leave it permeable for water as well as air which makes it very unique. Alongside use as a weed barrier in beds and beneath rocks, it is used as a protective line to prevent insects and invasive grasses.
You can use thicker fabrics in irrigation, drainage, and retaining wall applications to ward off roots and prevent seepage.
Next is perforated landscape fabrics which are usually cheap and lightweight. This fabric is designed with pre-cut perforations or holes where you can easily put your plants.
As these are easily replaceable and never suffocate roots, they are commonly used in gardens where plants are regularly placed and changed often.
Because of lightweight, perforated landscape fabric is not preferred to use in areas with heavy foot traffic, animal activity, or big size roots.
What is Landscape Fabric Used for?
Landscape fabric is an important tool for any garden. There are some significant reasons to use this tool.
Firstly, it helps to stabilize the soil. Every layer of fabric impacts the stability of pavers, decking, and gravel paths. It also resists gravel from being trampled into the soil and you do not have to top up your gravel as frequently. It also helps to reduce frost heave and to prevent pavers from sinking too far into the soil.
Again, it saves on mulch and also helps filtration. This multifunctional tool also works for moisture retaining.
It never dries the soil or never makes soil muddy which means it maintains the normal temperature and moisture of the soil.
Nevertheless, the main reason to use landscape fabric is it prevents weeds from growing without any touch of chemicals. It can almost block the sunlight, thus weeds have no chance to grow.
Gardeners also use this instead of plastic sheets because it never suffocates the soil or harms the organism in the soil.
Because of the easy installation process and long durability, it becomes gardeners’ first choice.
Should I Use Landscape Fabric?
Well, this is a thousand-dollar question. After knowing too many benefits of landscape fabric, you may intend to use it in your garden. But the moon is also black sight.
So, fabric has negative sights too. If you want a green, attractive and healthy garden, you shouldn’t use This. Again, if your main priority is to prevent weeds and escape the mud then you should use landscape fabric. So, the answer depends on your demand.
Pros Cons of Landscape Fabric:
- Landscape fabric can retard weed growth. The need for herbicides also can be reduced by using them. Necessary plants can easily survive in your garden while using fabric.
- Landscape cloth can control the temperature of the soil, keep the soil moist and cool. It also helps in hardscaping installations. It is a great stabilizer for the soil to help prevent the erosion of that fill sand or fill dirt.
- Erosion controlling on slopes by preventing washouts from heavy rains is another benefit of fabric.
- This cloth is not harsh like chemical products. Most importantly, it is safe for children and animals.
- It has tiny holes which allow water to go through plant roots.
- Landscape fabric not only prevents weeds but also resists nutrients from reaching the soil, which can cause them to evolve unhealthily.
- Your garden may not look nice after using fabric. One of the main reasons for gardening is to find peace of eyes, but you won’t find green everywhere because of this fabric. The unsightly cloth that is flapping in the breeze may hamper the attractiveness of your garden.
- Another issue is the fact that weed seeds can end up growing in the mulch placed on top of the fabric, defeating the purpose of the fabric entirely. If you wish to change out your garden beds regularly, the puncturing of the material to add new plants can cause it to be less fruitful over time.
- Weed is a natural thing and fabric is artificial. This artificial thing may prevent weeds but it will compact the soil and lower oxygen levels in the garden.
- It is an expensive tool. You have to spend money on while installing and managing
How Much is Landscape Fabric?
The price of landscape fabric depends on cloth cost, installation cost, and management cost. As there are different types of landscape fabric, there are different price ranges. Your garden area size is also a factor here. Remember, a big garden needs a big budget!.
Still, here we are providing you average cost-
In the United States, the average materials cost to install landscape fabric is $0.24 per square foot. You also have to hire labor for installing.
So, the cost for labor and materials per square foot is $0.47. A typical 1000 square foot project costs $489.08, with a range between $462 to $512&.but the accurate price will depend on your location, garden size, conditions, and working time you select.
In addition, the cost may change in different regions of the world.
Where to Buy Landscape Fabric?
You can buy landscape fabric from your nearest shop. The shop manager will help you in the full installation process providing labor and related protocol.
But if you want to buy online, you can go to an authentic online buying site like amazon.com.
Purchase your selected fabric and hire labor.
What Can I Use Instead of Landscape Fabric?
Though landscape fabrics are helpful, these have demerits too. So, you may think about what to do then!.
Wait, no need to worry!. Here you get to know about useful alternatives of landscape fabric-
Basically, most gardeners want eco-friendly products in their garden area. And biodegradable cardboard can be a good alternative to landscape fabric.
Cardboard won’t damage soil, rather it is environment friendly. Sheet mulching is a well-known concept and the idea of cardboard as a method of weed comes from this.
You should use fresh cardboard so that weed can be prevented. So, use super cheap cardboard instead of landscape fabric.
We all know old newspapers can be used for different purposes. You can also use newspapers as an effective weed barrier. As the newspaper is eco-friendly & biodegradable, it is very good for the soil. It also provides food for earthworms.
The size of the newspaper is too thin, so you have to make 6-8 layers. And there is no problem using hundreds of newspapers in your garden, as it is so cheap.
However, newspaper installation as a landscape alternative is much similar to cardboard placing. Just you need to change the newspaper often, as it will get wet after weeks.
After reading the pros and cons of landscape fabric, you want something that can cross the cons and fulfill your demand. Then burlap is best for you. As it is almost similar to fabric, you can install it in the same process. Burlap is made of organic material which means it will merge into the soil and won’t disturb earthworms.
However, it is not cheap as newspaper or cardboard, but it will work as a long-lasting barrier without harming the soil.
Ground Cover Plants
Sunlight is very important for weed growth. And ground cover plants block sunlight, so weed seeds & young weeds can’t grow. These plants won’t harm other plants and flowers in your garden.
Ground cover plants not only work as weed barriers but also add extra beauty to your garden. And the best thing about these plants is you don’t have to give extra time to care for them, they can survive in any weather. Ground cover plants will enhance your garden’s beauty with greenery.
These are the most prominent alternatives to landscape fabric. But if you prefer chemicals, then you can use herbicides. Using herbicides can keep your garden 100% weed-free. Though chemicals are not safe for animals or kids, experts forbid the use of this. It is also worse for the environment and causes damage to the soil.
Landscape fabric can be a good option for controlling your garden weeds. Nevertheless, it has bad sights that can’t be ignored. So, before using it in your garden do research and analyze it practically.