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preparing for a summer of gardening


By Callan4

United Kingdom Gb

Im currently taking everything out of my garden (bushes, trees, shrubs etc) ready to make a good border and put down a membrane ready to plant some nice borders. what can i do to make sure everything is dead in the current borders and wont effect my plans in the summer.



You would need to dig it all over and get any unwanted roots out. Weedkillers work on top growth, via the leaves, so they wouldn't help you. There isn't an easy answer, I'm afraid.

23 Nov, 2008


your membrane will take care of most weeds if you put it down and plant in the spring this will prevent light getting to the soil. Bind weed is the worst.Rod

23 Nov, 2008


Hi Callan, it is a long process, i did just the same 2 years ago when we moved into our new house. i removed pretty much everything and started from scratch. i did however keep one or two of the more mature shrubs and trees, so that the garden did'nt look too bare while the rest is getting going. i did bit by bit, started at the area closest to the house and just dug and dug and dug, and removed all the weeds and overgrown shrubs and constantly added in plenty of organic matter as old shrubs ect had drained any goodness in the soil. feel free to view the results on my garden page. - it is ofcourse still a work in progress, really starting to see some results of all my hard work, really glad i bit the bullet. and good luck with yours - i look forward to seeing the results!

23 Nov, 2008


I suppose I am on the dissenting side of this debate. This is always done here in the Pacific Northewest. Then covered with bark. One of course cuts slits into the fabric to plant your cherished ones.

Two negatives I wish to point out. Weeds will still germinate on top of the bark, and if you have serious weeds that you didn't get rid of before tarping, say horsetails -- it is harder to weed those out successfuly in a tarped soil. I much prefer to spend the loot on just adding more bark and compost and being able to trench down effectively to dig out the weeds.

Second negative. As the bark on top decomposes it often plugs up the breathing/rain penetration of the planting area. This effectivly limits good horizontal root growth potential. Worse yet, if you planted at soil level, often the planting mix you added will decompose and your plant will actually be lower than the surrounding area. Water then will flow from the groundcover into your hole, making it a sump.

If you go ahead and do this, make sure that your plant is slightly above the soil grade so this won't occur.

Keep the planet green, use less Plastic!

23 Nov, 2008


"currently taking everything out of my garden (bushes, trees, shrubs etc)"
I know I'm probably too late with this response- but please consider offering your unwanted shrubs etc, to other gardeners who may be delighted to have at least some of them! I hate to see plants being thrown away which in many cases are perfectly healthy. I have one or two items in my own garden I'm thinking of 'swapping' with my neighbours who may have some less desirable plants they don't like!

14 Apr, 2009

How do I say thanks?

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