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View Full Version : Weeds grew right through weedblock, any advice?


I26
07-24-2009, 01:41 PM
I am a homeowner who decided to tear out a mulch bed after it was taken over by weeds growing through the fabric. Either fabric is useless or I am not doing it right. I read about using a weed preventative like Preen before putting mulch back down and not using the fabric. Any advice for a joe shmoe who is sick of weeds. Thanks you.

Landrus2
07-24-2009, 01:46 PM
I am a homeowner who decided to tear out a mulch bed after it was taken over by weeds growing through the fabric. Either fabric is useless or I am not doing it right. I read about using a weed preventative like Preen before putting mulch back down and not using the fabric. Any advice for a joe shmoe who is sick of weeds. Thanks you.



Your way out is called maintenance:drinkup::drinkup::drinkup:

I26
07-24-2009, 01:53 PM
Thats the issue. I am constantly pulling weeds out of the bed most of which grew through the fabric. Thanks for such helpful advice though.

got some good help here: http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=274435&highlight=preen

bx24
07-24-2009, 02:47 PM
I am a homeowner who decided to tear out a mulch bed after it was taken over by weeds growing through the fabric. Either fabric is useless or I am not doing it right. I read about using a weed preventative like Preen before putting mulch back down and not using the fabric. Any advice for a joe shmoe who is sick of weeds. Thanks you.



That is easy, you went cheap on the mulch..Go at least 6 inches deep and have zero (after it compacts). I had 30 yards for my own property and after almost 5 months that was many 10 weeds...

LB1234
07-24-2009, 05:23 PM
That is easy, you went cheap on the mulch..Go at least 6 inches deep and have zero (after it compacts). I had 30 yards for my own property and after almost 5 months that was many 10 weeds...

are you trying to cause disease to start on the landscape plants in a bed with 6" deep mulch?

LB1234
07-24-2009, 05:25 PM
I am a homeowner who decided to tear out a mulch bed after it was taken over by weeds growing through the fabric. Either fabric is useless or I am not doing it right. I read about using a weed preventative like Preen before putting mulch back down and not using the fabric. Any advice for a joe shmoe who is sick of weeds. Thanks you.

Spot treat with roundup but be careful around other plants. Pulling weeds (IMHO & experience) does next to nothing unless you get the root...clover, dandelion, etc. you almost can never get by the root. Skip on the weed fabric IMO, waste of time/money. UNLESS its stone, then I use fabric. Oh ya, and use pre-emergent. Not sure about preen though.

I26
07-24-2009, 07:15 PM
I have heard the 6" mulch thing before. So this is not a good idea? I had 3" on top of the soil before I cleaned up the bed. I have been slacking on the weeding part due to working long hours and to many projects going but now I have the time to dedicate to this issue. Thanks for the advice though, its appreciated.

I will say that removing crab grass in front of the bed, lots of it, in order to plant grass is a bear. Glad I don't do lawn care for a living.

93Chevy
07-24-2009, 07:41 PM
Don't use weed block, it's a waste. Preen will help, but it's only a pre-emergent, it won't kill the root. It just prevents seeds from germinating. Glyphosate will kill to the root, but be careful to only spray the weeds. And in my opinion, 6 inches of mulch is way too heavy. 3-4 inches in optimum on new installs. Any thicker and it tends to be a tad unhealthy for plants.

4.3mudder
07-24-2009, 07:55 PM
Landscape fabric= waste of money. Get Preen, HD and Lowes sells it. I have used it, work great. It won't kill weeds that have started, but will stop new weeds from germinating.

EVM
07-24-2009, 08:00 PM
Wow, 6 inches of mulch? How do you plant annuals in 6 inches of mulch?

Anyways, good weed fabic works great in stone beds, the problem you run into is putting mulch/compost on TOP of the fabric, this is what the weeds germinate in. Then the weeds roots grow into the fabric, not up through.

93Chevy
07-24-2009, 08:04 PM
Wow, 6 inches of mulch? How do you plant annuals in 6 inches of mulch?

Anyways, good weed fabic works great in stone beds, the problem you run into is putting mulch/compost on TOP of the fabric, this is what the weeds germinate in. Then the weeds roots grow into the fabric, not up through.

That's exactly it. Weeds can't germinate on rock, however they can germinate in the sediment in the rock beds, but if the beds are maintained, it's not that big of an issue.

But yes, you need to prevent the weeds from germinating on top of the mulch.

bx24
07-24-2009, 08:20 PM
are you trying to cause disease to start on the landscape plants in a bed with 6" deep mulch?


I have been doing that for 15+ years..Funny thing was even last month TURF mag said at least 6inches..and I laughed...:hammerhead:

bx24
07-24-2009, 08:23 PM
Wow, 6 inches of mulch? How do you plant annuals in 6 inches of mulch?

Anyways, good weed fabic works great in stone beds, the problem you run into is putting mulch/compost on TOP of the fabric, this is what the weeds germinate in. Then the weeds roots grow into the fabric, not up through.


Easy move aside and then plant and move back in 3 months it will be 50% less and then winter will roll in and be down to 1"...Samething year after year.

Example, put down 6 inches on new soil and 1000 to1 in 1-month it will be 3.5 to 4 max and in another month will be less....you cannot go cheap boyz.

My feeling is if you cannot weed a 6ft wide bed (200 ft long) in less then 1 minute, you went cheap on mulch.

93Chevy
07-24-2009, 08:28 PM
Easy move aside and then plant and move back in 3 months it will be 50% less and then winter will roll in and be down to 1"...Samething year after year.

Example, put down 6 inches on new soil and 1000 to1 in 1-month it will be 3.5 to 4 max and in another month will be less....you cannot go cheap boyz.

My feeling is if you cannot weed a 6ft wide bed (200 ft long) in less then 1 minute, you went cheap on mulch.

Okay, I can understand it withering away, but...

How is it healthy for plants to be suffocated by that much mulch? And if you put 6 inches down every year, won't you have to remove the old mulch, because sooner or later, won't you have a doggone mound of mulch that just washes out when it rains?

EVM
07-24-2009, 08:30 PM
Easy move aside and then plant and move back in 3 months it will be 50% less and then winter will roll in and be down to 1"...Samething year after year.

Example, put down 6 inches on new soil and 1000 to1 in 1-month it will be 3.5 to 4 max and in another month will be less....you cannot go cheap boyz.

My feeling is if you cannot weed a 6ft wide bed (200 ft long) in less then 1 minute, you went cheap on mulch.

You won't find mulch any deeper than 2 inches on my properties. You are putting to much mulch down, especially if you put mulch in your beds every year. BTW, annuals don't grow very well in mulch.

bx24
07-24-2009, 08:32 PM
Okay, I can understand it withering away, but...

How is it healthy for plants to be suffocated by that much mulch? And if you put 6 inches down every year, won't you have to remove the old mulch, because sooner or later, won't you have a doggone mound of mulch that just washes out when it rains?

Every year all the mulch I put down rotts into the ground making it black..Washing away is about 5 to 8% if I had to guess.Come Oct/Nov if there is 1" of mulch I am lucky...Spruce was this year, last year Red Cedar and maybe next year is Hemlock.

It is a cycle that never ends but it also depends on the quality and type of mulch too.

bx24
07-24-2009, 08:33 PM
You won't find mulch any deeper than 2 inches on my properties. You are putting to much mulch down, especially if you put mulch in your beds every year. BTW, annuals don't grow very well in mulch.


Great and good for you. Yes I put it down year after year...30 yards is not alot of matl and not alot of time to spread (maybe 4 hours)...I do not put annuals in my beds..I like boxwoods, Dwarf Jun, etc....Easy.

93Chevy
07-24-2009, 08:34 PM
Every year all the mulch I put down rotts into the ground making it black..Washing away is about 5 to 8% if I had to guess.

It is a cycle that never ends but it also depends on the quality and type of mulch too.

That makes sense, I guess. I'm just used to seeing beds with so much mulch that you can't do anything with them except remove it and start over. It seems that buildup is from years of too much mulch in one area.

bx24
07-24-2009, 08:37 PM
That makes sense, I guess. I'm just used to seeing beds with so much mulch that you can't do anything with them except remove it and start over. It seems that buildup is from years of too much mulch in one area.


I agree. For $35 a yard I wish I did not need that much...It is just it is gone in the fall. Next year, gulp, I need about 45 yards...This wil be fun..

Maybe you can skip everyother year and spray with mulch longer for color? I put down only 4 inches in one area (to save $$$) and it is down to dirt now..

JFF
07-25-2009, 12:59 AM
The problem with the fabric is this: you are going to cover it with mulch. What happens to mulch? It decomposes into soil.

So now you have soil on top of fabric, weeds can germinate in the soil, and the roots can grow through the fabric making them a pain to pull.

4 inches of mulch, spray roundup periodically. Make sure you get weeds before they go to seed. A season or two of preemergent and roundup and the weeds will dwindle.

Mulch is beneficial not only for weed control, but for the simple fact that it decomposes into good soil. Why put a barrier between your plants and good soil?

ted putnam
07-25-2009, 01:21 AM
My neighbor asked why he had weeds when he put down weed fabric then 4" mulch. I pulled mulch back and looked at it. Nutgrass!... punched right through fabric...not at a seam. Right through the middle of a large solid area of fabric. Nutgrass is relentless and fabric is useless IMO.

JFF
07-25-2009, 10:44 PM
Agreed. Fabrics are for fashions.

Like bikinis, for example.

integrityman
07-25-2009, 11:08 PM
Don't use weed block, it's a waste. Preen will help, but it's only a pre-emergent, it won't kill the root. It just prevents seeds from germinating. Glyphosate will kill to the root, but be careful to only spray the weeds. And in my opinion, 6 inches of mulch is way too heavy. 3-4 inches in optimum on new installs. Any thicker and it tends to be a tad unhealthy for plants.

Plus the weed block fabric (IMO) does not allow moisture to penetrate very well and the soil doesnt breathe.

Don't go thicker than 3" on the muclh. It will leach N out of the soil.
Just gottas stay n top o' the weeds by pulling or spraying with a broad spectrum weed killer.