What if we told you that you can use a weed barrier as a backstage curtain? Although it is quite unusual or even weird, we bet it will do the job perfectly. But our team is not going to give you a list of alternative wide ranges of applications; our aim is to focus on its purpose, that is to say, protecting your open space area.
And as far as gardening is concerned, we are here to show you the best weed barrier guide along with some of our top pick products on the market and their reviews.
Here you will find the A-Z of different ways to keep your ground clean including types of weed cloth mats, what to look for when buying and how to install such weed control fabric on our land.
So, all you need to do is scroll down and read away.
Best Weed Barrier Comparison Chart
DeWitt P5 Pro 5 Weed Barrier Fabric
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ECOgardener Premium 5oz Pro Garden Weed Barrier Landscape Fabri
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Easy Gardener 15 Year Landscape Fabric
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Dewitt P3 Pro 5 Weed Barrier Fabric
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Easy Gardener Natural Burlap
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DeWitt Sunbelt Ground Cover Weed Barrier
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Agfabric Landscape Ground Cover
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Best Weed Barrier Reviews (Top Picks)
The beginning of our guide is about the products you want to see. Here we have checked out each of them in no particular order.
1. DeWitt P5 Pro 5 Weed Barrier Fabric
This product is a thick, sturdy and tightly weaved commercial weed barrier. The DeWitt Pro-5 Weed-Barrier Fabric is 5 feet x 250 feet in size and is made of a woven needle punch polypropylene fabric. The stripes on the roll are tinted in a different color, so you can easily see them when the fabric is rolled up. This is because the dyed contour runs length-wise on the item and therefore goes up towards the ground. And the 12 inch spaced lines is a huge advantage when aligning your plants.
- can be used around tomatoes, pepper plants, flower beds, and bushes
- dry good system
- 8 weight
- can apply sand on top and then pavers
- not a useful weed barrier for areas which already had weeds on them
- if any weeds go through the product it will be difficult to be removed since the roots will be tangled in the weave
2. ECOgardener Premium 5oz Pro Garden Weed Barrier Landscape Fabric
ECOgardener has a light and convenient weed barrier mat with a weight of just 11.22 pounds. This product is not only easy to be transported and cut but is also made with the right heaviness to protect your green space. This weed barrier is a 2-layered needle punched fabric that can be placed directly on the bare ground and then covered with mulch. In addition, the fabric can be cut very easily with a good pair of scissors or a box cutter. A bonus is the fact that this product comes with a 30-day full refund guarantee as well. It is a perfect addition to your garden all year round, although you have to be careful if the weather in your area is too hot.
- 2-layered needle punched fabric
- perfect for cold and warm seasons
- preserves and keeps soil moisture
- great for river rocks on top
- it can start degrading without a layer of mulch, rock or soil on top of it
- nutgrass may grow through it
3. Easy Gardener 15 Year Landscape Fabric
Here is a very thin and lightweight product, perfect for pots under 5 gallons. It comes with dimensions of 3×50 feet which makes it extremely convenient to measure and spread on your land. The Easy Gardener Landscape Fabric can also be used in flowerpots without disturbing the roots and moreover, you can apply it for lining your containers. This landscape fabric lets air and water through so that they get easily to your plants. And what is more, the manufacturer promises 15-year protection from weeds. Above all, this porous product is quite affordable and due to its paper-thin structure, it may be used as a runner in your vegetable garden.
- perfect for lining large containers
- not expensive
- cut without effort
- no need to use chemicals
- very thin and easily torn
- crabgrass can break through
4. Dewitt P3 Pro 5 Weed Barrier Fabric
We have picked another top product of DeWitt, but this time its size is smaller and has some modifications which we think is a plus. With its 3×250 feet dimensions, this is a practical 5oz per square yard polypropylene fabric that is widely accepted by leading landscape architects and government agencies. Although it is manufactured in China, this weed barrier is of excellent quality, keeps moisture perfectly, and therefore, you use less water for your garden. The Dewitt Weed Barrier Fabric comes with colored stripes that are 12 inches apart for extra convenience when planting your vegetation. Also, the multiple-layer technology that this item has contributes to excellent results in weed control.
- a thick layer of hydrophilic fabric
- woven needle punch polypropylene
- preferred by landscape professionals
- quick drainage
- not easily cut
- the gardening space should be level ground.
5. Easy Gardener Natural Burlap
If you are looking for a product that has hundreds of uses, then Easy Gardener Natural Burlap is just for you. It can be applied for gardening projects, plants protection and even for decoration. This unit’s indoor and outdoor usefulness is due to the fact that it is made of 100% jute, and hence it is natural and safe. Once you put your hands on this Earth-friendly burlap fabric, you will see how easy it is to prevent soil erosion in your fertile land. In addition, this product naturally holds in moisture and helps to stop wash-away. Another practical advantage is that it serves as a shield against birds and rodents so that your seeds, bushes, and bark stay safe.
- perfect for wrapping palm trees or evergreens
- not expensive
- practical shade cloth for sensitive plants
- can be tied to stakes
- unravels easily when cutting
- strong chemical smell
6. DeWitt Sunbelt Ground Cover Weed Barrier
This innovative weed cloth for gardens is UV stabilized and ecology-safe. The DeWitt Sunbelt Ground Cover Weed Barrier holds up the light and consequently, prevents weeds from growing underneath it. It’s made of woven black polypropylene and there is a yellow guide strip in every 12 inches for easy aligning and extra convenience. Also, this 29.2 pounds weed control fabric is great for your production field or greenhouse and moreover, it comes with a 5-year warranty to direct sunlight. Another thing that we really like about this product is its permeation because this will ensure easy drainage of heavy rains.
- water will not pool on it
- soaks liquids even with dirt on
- keeps ground moisture
- easy to place and position
- wide strands can get ragged when you cut it
- need to use weed torch to prevent fraying
7. Agfabric Landscape Ground Cover
If you intend to spend more money on a quality product, then Agfabric Landscape Ground Cover can be your first choice. This unit is made of PP and PE plastic flat yarn that guarantees high strength. Also, among the advantages of this weed barrier under gravel is its resistance to UV light and to corrosion. What is more, this product is proof against corrosion in different pH of the soil and water and anti-microbial. When you use it, you will see that it keeps the ground clean, the drainage is really quick and also, it will last for years in direct sunlight. And due to its heavy duty fabric, you can find it useful in a wide range of applications like irrigation work, road paving, building projects and even behind a stacked retaining wall.
- strong enough to place stones, rocks or pebbles on it.
- helps to prevent roots from rot
- can be reused for a long time
- high breaking strength of up to 20 KN/m
- polyurethane threads may unravel on cut edges
- woven doesn’t allow water to go through as well as the fabric
8. Scotts 25-Year Pro Fabric
When searching for a product to protect your vegetable garden from unwanted vegetation, then Scotts Pro Fabric might be the answer. This unit weighs only 4.75 pounds and comes in a compact size of 36x5x5 inches to serve your needs. Also, the cloth-like barrier is easy to place and position which makes it ideal for perennial beds plans and annual gardening. What is more, the weed barrier under mulch can be left up all winter in the snow without it damaging its structure or durability. You can even use this unit for erosion control and place it around your trees or shrubs as well. A bonus is the fact that the weed control mat comes with a 25-year warranty from the manufacturer.
- labor-saving for hardscape projects
- easy installation
- all-year-round use
- lightweight and convenient to work with
- water doesn’t soak quickly
- tends to tear when cut
Why Do You Need A Weed Barrier For Your Fertilized Land?
A plant is often called a “weed” when it has practically no value, grows fast or takes up space for light, water or nutrients of your crops. However, to some such vegetation might not be wanted, while to others it can be an attractive addition to their gardens. And in order to achieve the desired look and create a green area that will suit your needs, many people resort to this textile material to control weeds.
Advantages and Disadvantages of using landscape fabric
If you are still wondering whether you really need to get a weed barrier under mulch, we can give you a hand into making a final decision. Here we have listed the main benefits of using weed control mat along with its drawbacks.
- You don’t have to spend every weekend removing weeds in your garden. The purpose of such weed mat is to completely control them.
- Once you install this inorganic fabric, you won’t worry about changing it up. Some manufacturers even guarantee the durability and strength of their products for years to come.
- The soil under it will not get dry. Many units are specially designed to keep the moisture and therefore save on watering.
- When weeds do germinate, you can easily pull them out.
- This commercial weed barrier does an amazing job for gravel as mulch or sidewalk.
- Easy installation – you just lay the roll on the ground and staple it where you need it.
- No more muddy puddles in your yard with this item as it lets water through it.
- There are hundreds of uses from gardening projects, soil erosion prevention to seed germination. You can also apply the cloth-like barrier around bushes, trees, flower beds etc.
- You still need to take care of your garden with the weed barrier because weeds will start peeking through it eventually.
- If you want to change the ground cover fabric you will find out that it can be a tough job.
- It is difficult to feed your plants through it and you will have to lift the fabric for this purpose.
- You need to cut the fabric so that your plants don’t get chocked as they grow.
- It is not a practical solution to install on slopes as it is hard to keep the ground covered as well as watering it.
- You have to buy it and that means you need to spend money on another item to get your garden done.
- Unfortunately, the weed cloth for gardens can end the soil improvement. The ground gets hard underneath it and all the nourishment and mineralization processes are doomed to stop. Moreover, the lack of enough air under the landscape fabric leads to decaying weeds with a terrible smell.
Weed Barrier Categories
Now as you are familiar with the benefits and drawbacks of using landscape fabric, we are taking you to the next level and provide you with detailed information about the different types of weed barriers and their special characteristics.
Before that, you may wish to check out our exclusive gardening equipment, fertilizers, and extensive guides for more information, advice, and help on your gardening projects.
1. Natural Weed Barrier
Protecting your garden or fertilized land from unwanted plants is always connected with a lot of hard work, weeding and using chemical substances that cost money. Despite this is true, there are other, more unprocessed ways of keeping weeds away and have rich and fertile soil in the same way. There are many techniques to do this, but we have chosen only two that we believe are the most practical, convenient and easy to find.
- Wood chip mulch
This non-artificial procedure is about the use of wood chips or bark. You can either buy it or collect it from a wood, but in any case, you will find a perfect solution to weed problems. What is more, wood chip mulch is not only used for suppressing weeds, but also for nurturing the plants and providing habitat for beneficial organisms. Here are some other practical applications:
- Improves soil structure and its ability to absorb and hold water.
- Prevents erosion.
- Slow release of nutrients to plants and hence increase biodiversity in your garden like earthworms ground beetles etc.
- After decomposing, wood chips provide the net increase of nitrogen to the soil.
- Straw and Hay
Another way to naturally protect your open area is to use organic materials like straw and hay. Finding it would not be that hard since you can always ask your neighbor for the grass left from the lawn clipping. Or, if you have a big field you can remove the grass yourself. You should definitely check out our expert advice on the best brush cutter blade for more practical tips on how to choose the perfect tool for cutting grass for this type of weed barrier.
Then, you gradually build the layers around your plants and when they begin to break down; they will release nutrients and hence make the soil fertile.
However, there are some things to consider before choosing either material
- You need a few weed seeds
- It degrades quickly and therefore improves the soil faster
- You can pull it apart easily
- Low matting
- Water passes through it a lot better
- You need lots of weed seeds
- It degrades slower
- The stems are not as broken down and it’s a little bit harder to separate the sticks
- High mating
- Absorbs most of the water
2. Fabric Weed Barriers
This type of weed barrier is characterized by a breathable structure that also allows water from rain or sprinklers to reach the plants ‘roots. The fabric is usually made from geotextile material and there is a thin layer of polyethylene. Also, this artificial textile will let all the nutrients from your fertilizer or mulch to get through and therefore enrich the soil. It is perfect for extensive landscaping, garden areas without drip irrigation or applied on bare soil.
Moreover, the black color of the fabric darkens the soil and blocks sunlight preventing unwanted vegetation underneath it to grow.
3. Plastic Weed Barriers
Plastic sheeting under gravel is perhaps the most effective way to stop weeding. Its mechanism of work is to smother existing weeds. It is ideal for areas with cool climate as it tends to warm up the soil under it and hence prepare the ground for early planting. However, you need to consider the fact that this material does not allow water getting through it, so it is mainly recommended for drip irrigation. In addition, water will not be the only substance that could not penetrate, the same will go to all the nutrients of organic mulch – they will simply not reach the roots as well.
Landscape plastic sheeting can be UV protected and it is suggested to be used for shrub borders and flower beds.
4. Homemade Barriers
The cheapest method of all is also the simplest. All you have to do is get cardboard boxes or newspapers from your local department store, your neighbor or from your garage and cut it into even pieces. The next step will be to place it around your plants and then spread mulch on top of it. Overall, this is extremely easy to be done without extra preparation. But what is so good about these cheap weed barrier ideas except for the fact that it’s free? Well, here are just a few things to list:
- They protect your garden by blocking sunlight and hence unwanted plants do not grow.
- What you can use instead of landscape fabric can allow water and nutrients to soak through the roots. This way, it keeps the soil moist.
- Also, this weed barrier under gravel decomposes naturally and is eco-friendly.
Choosing Your Weed Barrier
In this section, we will give some practical and useful suggestions on what to look for before spending money on weed barriers. We will look into the most important features to think about in terms of environmental issues, UV protection, ease of installation and durability.
1. Environmentally Friendly Weed Barriers
When a keen gardener has to choose from all the weed barriers on the market, then there pops up the question –Is it safe? The biggest issue is about the quality of the soil we use to grow our plants. Moreover, even big companies producing weed barrier under mulch has thought of how to protect and enhance vegetation production without damaging the ground.
A key moment is the beginning of manufacturing fabrics that are porous and let water and air go through it. This way the soil gets the nutrients needed for a good microbiological environment. Also, the materials used for making this fabric are in accordance with your needs and natural surroundings. PP and PE are the most common substances and they are approved for this use. These materials are appropriate for cold and warm seasons; they prevent roots from rot and are anti-microbial.
Another, more natural weed barrier, is the one made of jute. Such burlap is not only earth-friendly but can also be used for every application that the inorganic materials have.
However, if you are a supporter of more organic ways to take care of your garden, then you should opt for a biodegradable weed cloth which might actually make you not use your weed barrier at all.
2. UV Protection
Since weed barriers are used to cover the ground and are exposed to direct sunlight, then there is no wonder why manufacturers have started offering on the market UV protection landscape fabrics. The very barrier sheet is black, which is heated by the sun. Without UV protection, the weed barrier sheet will lose its strength and become more prone to decay, tearing and fraying. This way, you will see the holes from where unneeded plants will start growing.
Although it is more expensive, this feature is worth the money since it will maintain the life of the fabric. And if the area where you live tends to get really hot during the summer, then we think you should definitely think about that option. You can check out our landscape edging for more practical decoration ideas on how to improve the look of your garden.
3. Ease of Installation
Most weed barriers offered on the market are sold without extra fixing materials. But if you don’t want the wind to blow away your barrier mat, then you really need to get these anchor pins, staples or stakes. They are made of steel and secure the fabric.
Basically, installing this product is not difficult – you just spread it on top of your desired area and then fix it to the ground with the staples you have bought in advance. However, there are some steps to follow in order to prepare the ground and make sure you apply the fabric the right way. We will discuss this topic in a moment.
Many of you may question the durability of a simple nylon. But let us tell you that nowadays weed barriers come in different dimensions and thickness of the material used. What is more, some manufacturers offer a guarantee for their goods as a written promise that the item will sustain any weather conditions and will not tear. The material used for production is really strong and durable.
How To Install Your Weed Barrier
The good thing about landscape fabrics is that their installation is more or less the same. Learning how to install a weed barrier, though, is not as a challenging task as it may seem and it will not take up much of your time unless you own a large land. We will hence walk you through the main steps of the process for maximum clarity.
You will need:
- A roll of weed barrier
- Utility knife
- A pair of scissors
- A hammer
How to do it:
- Remove the weeds from the ground you are going to cover. For optimal results, you may wish to spray the unneeded vegetation and let it die out for a week and then remove it.
- Lay down the fabric with colored lines on top. Cut it according to the size and shape of the land you are going to work on.
- Overlap the ends to avoid fraying of the fabric. Then add a staple and tackle it down at one end to pull it tight. Then repeat this stage with the other end. If your bed is wider than one piece of fabric, lay a piece next to it and overlap again.
- Use the hammer to put staples around every 3 or 4 feet along the fabric.
- Cut a small X for the plants you are going to grow with the utility knife.
In the end, we believe that you have finally got the idea of what to look for when doing your gardening projects. Our team has synthesized the most up-to-date information in order to present you the best weed barrier guide to help you pick your number-one landscape fabric.
As always, we are open to your feedback and would appreciate any comment left by you. If you liked the article, show it to your friends or share it online. Let us know if anything can be changed or improved. Thanks for reading and as always – stay put!