Easy Weed Control using weed mat.
Its always difficult to get rid of large areas of persistent weeds, smothering them is a great option for effective weed control.
This article is about choosing the right method of doing this so that you are not left with plastic and similar in the garden. You also need a product that will last long enough to stop the weeds. And this is from 4 – 6 years in some cases.
What you need in a weed mat
You need something that you can cover up so that it looks aesthetically pleasing in the garden.
You also need a biodegradable weed matt that will just ‘disappear’ after a number of years. You also need a product that will last for 6 years.
The problem with plastic weed mat and old carpet.
Plastic weed mat and old carpet can be a problem for years as they just don’t break down.
Cheap weed mat alternatives
You can use thick layers of newspaper and cardboard. However they break down to quickly for most weeds.
We have been using a method for a few years that works well for us.
Our Method of using weed mat for weed control.
A little preparation will make the application of weed mat more effective.
- The first step is to get rid of as many weeds as you can by digging.
- Then add some organic matter to the soil, compost, cardboard, old newspaper that is shredded.
- Add some worms, not the worm farm ones, but the normal garden worms.
Now its time to add the smothering layer of weed mat.
We use a product called ‘Weed Gunnel’, its a weed mat that is biodegradable. Another one is called ‘Ecocover’.
The one we use lasts around 4 years if left uncovered, so it really smothers weeds.
You can plant through it and it is permeable, so moisture (rainwater) and liquid fertiliser can still be used.
You can cover it with a layer of mulch which improves the aesthetics, and also prolongs the life to around double or 8 years.
Why do we add organic matter beneath the weed mat
We add the organic matter and worms to help condition the soil. Generally in good soils the worms will come by themselves, however as our compost heap has an abundance of worms, we give nature a helping hand.