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Professional tips on how to use landscape fabric
16th December 2020

Professional tips on how to use landscape fabric

A quality landscape fabric can make your gardening endeavours a lot easier by minimising weed growth while keeping the soil beneath in good condition. You can cover the fabric with bark chippings, stones or other kind of decorative mulch for a natural-looking effect while preventing weeds from spoiling the view.

Here are some more professional tips on using landscape fabric in your garden and for all kinds of landscaping projects.

Add Nutrients to Soil Before Covering

The soil’s ability to absorb new healthy nutrients will be restricted once it is covered so it is a good idea to add some amendments to it before you cover. Mix in some nutrient-rich topsoil or compost to feed the plants that will protrude from the landscape fabric. Also remember when doing this, it is better to err on the side of too much fresh topsoil or compost than too little.

After adding some amendments, smooth the soil surface carefully and break up any lumps with a rake or garden fork. The bark chippings or mulch that will go on top of the landscape fabric need a smooth surface with no obvious peaks and troughs.


Use a Woven Landscape Fabric

Never use an ordinary sheet of plastic as this material will prevent water, air and the already reduced amount of nutrients from penetrating through to the soil underneath. A quality woven landscape fabric such the black polypropylene Phormisol 100 woven ground cover available through Springbridge is ideal as it will allow water and air to get through, keeping the soil in good condition and any plants there growing healthily.

Many landscaping projects use sloping areas where it is tempting to lay the sheet fuzzy-side up to grip the covering mulch better, but you actually want it to grip the soil underneath so always lay the fabric fuzzy-side down. Water will also flow downwards more easily with the fuzzy-side down.


Lower the Soil Beneath the Edging

The area of topsoil being covered by the ground sheet should be significantly lower than the edging of the pathway or lawn beside it. Aim to lower it by a good seven or eight centimetres (about three inches) so there is plenty of room for the mulch.

You can also slightly slope the soil up towards the beds from the edging if you prefer, but the edging side will need that extra deepness to prevent the mulch from spilling onto the adjacent path or lawn.


Overlap and Pin the Fabric

When laying multiple sheets of landscape fabric, make sure to overlap the ends that meet by a good foot or so. This will prevent them becoming dislodged and exposing the topsoil underneath, allowing strips of weeds to sprout up which can be difficult and annoying to get rid of once the fabric and mulch has been laid.

You can also use U-shaped pins or staples every foot or so to keep the fabric in place. These might not always be arranged in a uniform manner either, so keep any eye out for baggy or loose areas of fabric which you can pin down to prevent them poking up through the mulch in an unsightly manner.


If you require any high quality landscape fabric for a gardening or landscaping project, then contact Springbridge via our website or call today on 0845 370 1921 for more information.