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Pulling weeds from the flower bed is one of the most annoying chores for most gardeners. However, letting your guard down and allowing weeds to grow alongside your fruits and vegetables isn’t an option either. Not only do they lower the aesthetics, but they also rip off water and nutrients from the soil, leaving your valuable healthy eating plants deprived of important resources. Is there a way to get rid of the weeds without spending hours pulling them through the summers? Continue reading to learn what to put in flower beds to prevent weeds.
What To Put In Flower Beds To Prevent Weeds
Keeping the soil covered is the key to eliminating weeds from the flower bed, and the simplest way to do so is to apply mulch. Without mulch, weed seeds easily blow in with the wind to infiltrate the soil, germinate and receive sunlight to thrive. By applying a thick layer of mulch to the soil, you present a barrier to the drifting weed seeds, preventing them from landing on your flower bed. The same mulch also suppresses the existing weeds, depriving them of sunlight and air.
Apply a minimum of a 4-inch layer of organic mulch, such as bark chips, grass clippings, shredded leaves, sawdust, or compost, around your fruits, vegetables, and perennials to keep the weeds at bay. Other than preventing weeds in your flower bed, as the organic material decomposes, it adds valuable nutrients to the soil, helping your plants grow.
2. More Plants
Another thing you can put in the flower beds to keep the weeds down is more plants! Exposed soil is a playground for weeds. Growing the plants compactly means that there’s less empty space left for the weeds to grow. Of course, you’ll still need to follow the spacing requirements for the plant species and any bare space will need to be covered with mulch. Keep the plant spacing to a minimum so you have to apply less mulch – mulch can be expensive!
A thick living cover over the soil doesn’t only suppress weeds; it offers additional benefits as well. While evaporation is higher in exposed soil, soil that’s covered with dense plantings is better off at conserving moisture, suggesting you’ll have to irrigate less often to keep your plant nourished.
When growing vegetables and flowers, choose companion plants to grow close in flower beds. Companion plants promote each other’s growth by offering mutual benefits and keep the weeds at bay by growing close together.
Preventing Weeds in Garden – FAQs
How to Prevent Weeds in New Flower Bed
The best way to start a new flower bed is to treat the area to get rid of the weeds and have a clean slate to grow your plants in. Here’s what to do:
- Pull any visible weeds by hand.
- Some gardeners like to till the soil to uproot the weeds and aerate the soil, but this is optional.
- Lay down newspapers, overlapping them until you have multiple layers over the entire flower bed.
- Cover the newspaper layers with a 4-inch layer of mulch. This step helps add weight over the newspaper to prevent it from blowing away.
- Spray the mulch with water to speed up the breakdown of organic material that enriches the soil with nutrients.
- Wait a couple of months for the arrangement to smother the unwanted growth in the flower bed before you can start planting over it.
Once you have a clean flower bed to start planting in, you’ll still need to maintain it through the rest of the growing season by keeping all the bare spaces covered with mulch.
Are Weed Barriers Any Good?
When thinking of ways to get rid of weeds, gardeners often ask if weed barrier cloth will do the trick. Weed barriers may seem like a good idea at first, but weeds will eventually break their way through the fabric, rupturing the cloth and making it even more difficult to pull them out. Also, while weed barrier fabric allows moisture to pass through, the pores eventually block with decayed material, preventing moisture and fertilizers from seeping into the soil easily to nourish the plants.
What To Put In Flower Beds To Prevent Weeds – Conclusion
Follow these simple tips to keep your flower beds, vegetable and fruit gardens free of weeds all summers without spending hours on your knees, weeding by hand. Looking to prevent your plants from heat? We can help there too.