Is using a tarp the best way to suppress weeds? I have black tarp to lay down on my garden to suppress weeds. My mom said to just cut holes where my plants are. Is this the best way? The weeds are small and very difficult to remove.
This will be an effective barrier for weeds but you may not like the appearance. I recommend the hula hoe. It is small enough to maneuver around plants and makes quick work of weeding.
I use empty dog, cat, chicken bags like that, that are large, then put bark on top of that. Have also used paper bags from the grocery store.
Black plastic is usually used. It comes on rolls you can purchase at any garden shop . I am not sure if Walmart carries it in their garden shop. Wood chips or rocks are used on top to hold it down. But if you buy wood chips then a good 2 inch depth will keep the weeds from growing thru anyway and you won't need the plastic. I keep all my flower beds that way and seldom have a weed in it. The other advantage is the wood chips break down over time adding nutrients and soil to your garden. I buy wood chips every other year just to refresh the garden and keep it looking clean and fresh.
Have you heard of lasagna gardening? I read an article about it, a woman discovered that newspapers, and cardboard were the best way to keep weeds down as well as make a great environment for beneficial earthworms and keep the roots of the plants moist. She left a pile of newspapers for recycling at her curb and went on vacation, they did not get picked up and it rained. All foliage under the pile had deteriorated and turned to beneficial organic matter. Earthworms were active, also adding to the organic matter. No weeds would ever get through the pile of paper, as well as the paper adding more organic matter to the soil. We just moved to an older home with a neglected yard. I make a "cardboard run" the night before recycling day, collecting cardboard, and newspapers from the neighborhood. I use the cardboard to build new landscape beds, laying it flat, making sure there are no spaces for light between pieces. Newspaper in layers (only black ink) is best for vegetable gardens. Cover the cardboard with a thick wood chip mulch, and the newspaper with shredded leaves or straw. My beds have no weeds, and are becoming more fertile each year as I add more mulch.
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