How to Use Landscape Fabric
Time Required: 2-4 hours
Landscape fabric is considered a resilient barrier for yard areas and flower beds prone to weeds. It is a key material to uphold the beauty in your landscaping projects and gardens while controlling excessive weed growth and excessive soil erosion for years.
This guide highlights everything you need to know about how to use landscape fabric and the benefits of its use in your planted areas.
- Landscape fabric is a perforated material that allows water and moisture to reach your soil.
- The best landscape fabric can be used under rock and gravel landscaping and yard design.
- Landscape fabric is the most economical and sustainable option to keep weeds away.
- This type of installation is not recommended for vegetable gardens or annual flowers.
There are landscape fabric pros and cons including deteriorating over time and seeping into the soil, causing it to become unhealthy and not receive pure nutrients from organic sources.
When it is time to replace, remove the mulch and pull up the old landscape fabric to start a new installation process.
- Be sure to add the necessary plant food and fertilizer to your plant before laying the landscape fabric.
- Smooth the ground after adding fertilizer to keep landscape fabric intact.
- Edge your landscape area by digging 2 to 3 inches around the garden area or creating an inward slope to be sure water reaches your plant underneath the landscape fabric.
Tip: If applicable, add soil amendments to the ground to shift the condition of the soil so it is more suitable for your landscaping project. The Home Depot sells soil meter tests to verify that amendments are needed.
Landscape fabric comes in either a thin plastic sheeting or dense cloth material with some newer products having created landscape fabric with patented material and technology that encourages plant and root growth while keeping the weeds down.
When laying landscape fabric, fuzzy side face down is the standard to capture soil moisture. Make sure to read the instructions on your landscape fabric to determine which side should touch the ground.
- Align the landscape fabric throughout your project space.
- Overlap fabric at 6 inches, instead of cutting the fabric, to make the project long-lasting.
- Cut the landscape fabric where necessary to keep plants intact.
Tip: Using herbicide or a pre-emergent spray prior to applying the landscape fabric or on top of the mulch can help deter weed growth over time.
- After laying fabric, cut slits into the material according to the size of your plant.
Tip: Shrubs and flowers should already be planted for a successful installation 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.
- Repeat this as needed when the mulch degrades or thins out.
Tip: Mulch is defined as organic matter, wood chips, straw or grass clippings.
Landscape fabric erodes after over time. Be prepared to manage small maintenance of the landscape fabric, like pulling weeds, as they may sprout through the fabric.