As many of you may remember, our very first project here at Rental House Rules was putting in a flower bed…
And in so doing, that I tried a weed-blocking fabric I’ve never used before…
It is my great pleasure to report that weed-blocking fabric works!!!
For the most part.
I mean, it’s not impervious or anything.
But, it has greatly reduced our “need to weed” which, in Western PA, is worth its environmental footprint. (It’s made of petroleum products = not biodegradable, etc.)
Here’s a pre-weeding-session shot:
Especially considering that a similarly cleared area without weed-blocking fabric in our backyard looked like this:
Here’s a few shots of what I found in the front flower bed:
That’s about it… really.
The stuff toward the back is not weeds, but rather climbing flowers — namely Nasturnium & Morning Glory — that hadn’t really flowered at the time this pic was taken.
See how they’re beginning to climb the lattice? Squee! They’re going to look SO pretty!!!
By contrast, here are a couple of pics of what I pulled out of the backyard un-weedblocked area…
To further illustrate, here’s the body count from the front flower bed…
And from the bench area:
Weed-blocked flower bed weeding = 1 person/4 minutes
Non weed-blocked “flower bed” weeding = 2 people/30 minutes
Yeah. We’re sold on the evil petroleum fabric.
If you’re still on the fence, here are a few other points of interest:
1) The flower bed in front is filled with nutrient-rich garden soil and had almost no weeds; The flower bed in back is plain old Pennsylvania dirt, yet had tons of weeds.
2) This has been one of the rainiest Spring/Summer seasons in recorded PA history. Which means the flowers are growing like crazy… but in our front flower bed (where we used the fabric), the weeds are not.
3) I will definitely harbor a little eco-guilt for using the petroleum-based stuff instead of trying the same technique using biodegradable paper bags. However, I doubt the paper would work as well, considering how rainy it is here. I’m pretty sure they would have decomposed already.
4) I don’t think we would have had even that many weeds in the front bed had I not gone all crazy & decided to poke tiny holes in the weedblocking fabric to plant groundcover seeds.
Tip: Fill your spouse/significant other/roommate in on your landscaping plans so they don’t accidentally pull up all of your ground cover sprouts — because he/she thought they were weeds instead of flowers…
Dan — “I don’t think that weedblock fabric works very well. I had to pull up a ton of little helicopter-blade shaped thingies when I weeded the other day.”
Me — “Helicopter blades? … Oh, you mean my Morning Glories?”
Dan — “D’oh!”
Anyway… the fabric really works. (On veggie gardens, too.) And yes, we will be laying some down underneath that park bench once the weather decides to cooperate for a minute.
Here’s some after shots to seal the “sell you on weed-blocking fabric” deal:
COMING UP: A BRIEF CARPET-CLEANING TUTORIAL (Sorry for the delay.)