How can I, a physically disabled women, keep grass and weeds out of my front flower bed (consisting of over 200 gladiola bulbs). The flower bed is surrounding my front deck. Also, I have many other plants and flowers throughout the yard? The grass, weeds and wire grass just about ate them all up this past year.
There is too much demand on our watering supply to water daily, so I had a deep layer of mulch (that the bulbs wear planted/set into which would and did retain the moisture for the flowers).
I hired help to plant the bulbs in mulch that had been sitting for a two to four years BUT the grass, weeds etc. came up making the flower beds looking nasty/dirty and unkept.
I do not recall my grandparents having any trouble with their bulbs being over run by grass and weeds. Perhaps I was too young to notice them out daily weeding to notice why their flower beds always looked fantastic!
Please help with some sort of deterrent for me to use for this problem.
Laying a layer of water soaked newspaper and covering it with more mulch was suggested to stop the weeds/grass from growing. I haven't tried this yet, has anyone of you done this sort of thing or anything else to be a deterrent to weeds & grass growing in the flower beds?
Any help or suggestion will be greatly appreciated and used next spring in 2007 as I am sure that the over 200 gladiola bulbs will nearly double (or I am hoping they will).
Thanks and God bless you & yours.
Hardiness Zone: 7b
That was going to be my suggestion... using newspapers to help block the weeds. This fall, I'd suggest cutting the weeds as short as possible. If you wait until the glad foliage dies back you can cut them down too. Then just lay a 4-6 sheet layer of black/white newspaper over the area, water it down and then mulch with chopped leaves or shredded bark about 3" deep. If you have other perennials, then you would want to lay the newspaper around those plants before mulching. I use this method all the time, and can really kick myself when I don't. It usually lasts me 12-16 months before I start to notice weeds again. I have one bed that just has a few shrubs, so I used a much thicker layer of newspaper and it has been two years since I put down the newspaper under the mulch. You may still have weed seeds drop into the bed, but they are very easy to pull if the sprout in the mulch.
If you have a lot of creeping weeds, make sure you edge the bed with some sort of barrier. I like metal edging, but plastic works too if you don't have to compete with any tree roots. (09/14/2006)
If you can deprive the weed seeds of light, they wont be able to sprout. Newspapers are great for this. They are what I use. Some people purchase a plastic made for this purpose. Plastic doesnt break down after several years and need to be replaced. (09/15/2006)
By Carol in PA
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