Everything You Need to Know About Landscape Fabric

landscape fabric

Do you love gardening and want to stop weed growth from popping up and ruining your landscaping masterpiece? If you answered yes, look no further than landscape fabric. While there are several different types and uses, generally speaking, any kind of landscaping fabric will mitigate weed issues.

In this article, we’ll cover what landscape fabric is, how you install it, some of the pros and cons of using this tool, and finally a handful of tips. So let’s get started!

First, what is landscape fabric?

Landscape fabric is essentially a tightly woven plastic material that is molded into a solid sheet with perforated holes. The primary purpose of these holes is to allow the entry of water for watering purposes. This unique design supports plant growth while simultaneously preventing weeds.


What is landscape fabric used for?

Whether you don’t really have a green thumb, are a professional landscaper, or are just an avid gardener, fabrics play a vital role in landscaping. They have a variety of uses in the garden, such as:

  • Reducing the need for chemical weed killers, such as herbicides;
  • Helping to retain soil moisture levels through the minimization of evaporation, and;
  • Acting as both a sustainable and economical option to keep weeds at bay.



What is landscape fabric made of?

The composition of landscaping fabric is relatively simple and straightforward. For the most part, it’s made up of various types of recycled materials including plastic, linen, or synthetic polyester. As we mentioned before, it has porous holes allowing water to get in but keeping weeds from taking over.


When to use landscape fabric?  

Garden fabrics are useful when you decorate your garden with rock or gravel landscaping. They’re also useful if you want to avoid weeds in general so as to maintain an element of neatness, even if you’re not into planting flowers around your property. In addition, you can use it whenever you need the sustainable option to ensure the maximum growth of shrubs and trees in your garden.


Landscaping fabric pros and cons

Generally speaking, landscape fabric is a great solution for most gardens or landscape designs. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to the impact they’ll have on the environment. First, let’s unpack the pros of using fabrics in your garden.


  • Weeds die naturally due to the lack of light and air.
  • No need to spend money purchasing chemical herbicides for every season.
  • Reduces evaporation and plays a vital role in keeping the plants hydrated.
  • Landscaping fabrics promote soil moreover, they also help to prevent soil erosion, thus keeping the soil fertile and healthy.
  • Successfully prevents ultraviolet radiation, which further promotes soil health.
  • Can last for a relatively long time, up to roughly ten years before needing to be replaced.

This isn’t to say there are a couple of considerations to keep in mind as well. While most of these cons can be mitigated in other ways, it’s worth noting each of these.


  • Prevents the survival of garden-friendly earthworms.
  • Natural biodegradation can promote soil health by replenishing necessary nutrients. Garden fabrics stop this process.
  • When it comes time to replace it, it can occasionally be a challenge and require tearing up large sections of your landscaping.



Should you use landscape fabric?

In most cases, yes, you should consider using landscaping fabrics. This is especially true if you constantly have to deal with weeds in and around your garden. As landscape fabric can help eliminate them, maintain soil moisture levels, and reduce the use of herbicides, they are a great solution in virtually every situation. Moreover, you will also keep your home, garden, and loved ones from encountering various chemical herbicides that can have unintended side effects.

There is one place you may wish to avoid them, which is if you’re planting a vegetable garden. More on this concern shortly.


How long does landscape fabric last?

The life of the landscape fabric depends on the quality of the material and how it was installed. Generally speaking, as we mentioned before high-quality landscaper fabric should last about 10 years before needing to be replaced. Effectively, it’s a one-time investment that will pay off in the long run.


Usage Tips

Before purchasing your first roll of landscaping fabric, it’s helpful to know how to use it. Here are a few tips to use this more efficiently.


Is landscape fabric safe for vegetable gardens?

Unfortunately, garden fabrics, regardless of material, aren’t suitable for vegetable gardens. The main reason is that they compress the soil over time and can prevent necessary aeration. Around shrubs and trees — sure, they’re great! But for anything requiring sustainable nutrients, such as tomatoes, green beans, and so forth they’re simply not a viable option.


Does landscape fabric let water through?

Yes, landscape fabric lets the water and air through its membrane. Likewise, it’ll also prevent the entry of ultraviolet radiation from the sun, which stops the germination of weeds.


Will landscape fabric kill grass?

Gardeners and landscapers typically use garden fabrics to prevent weed growth. However, grasses are also unable to break through the material, meaning that any grass below your fabric will eventually die out.


landscape fabric

Which side of landscape fabric goes up?

For a handful of brands, it won’t matter which side of the fabric goes up and which side goes down. Both sides are identical, so it won’t make any difference in performance. However, for the vast majority of others, including the higher quality brands we recommend, you’ll want to place the shiny side up with the matte or felted side facing the soil. This allows the fabric to stick to the soil more efficiently, keeping it in place.


When should you install landscape fabric?

Simply put, if you have questions or concerns always call the professionals! Our experience in the landscaping industry includes professionally installing landscape fabrics. The team here at Sun Power Lawn Care will help you decide which brand is best for you, where you should use it throughout your property, and when the optimal time to replace it will be.

CONTACT US today for a free quote!

Here are some great resources to help your lawn look its best:

How To Prepare Your Yard For A Hurricane

Black Mold on Crepe Myrtles – 7 Things You Need to Know

Ask An Expert: How to Prevent Mosquitoes In Your Yard This Summer