How to Prevent Grass in Flower Beds

How to Keep Grass Out of Flower Beds

One of the most frustrating and ongoing battles after making a flower bed is keeping the surrounding grass out. In this post you will find several proven strategies for how to keep grass out of your flower beds and planting areas.

Installing Landscaping Fabric

Landscaping Fabric

One of the least expensive ways to prevent weeds and grass in your flower beds is to install a landscaping fabric. The fabric serves as a barrier to prevent grass and weeds from penetrating the surface.

Landscaping fabric or weed barrier is a permeable material installed directly on top of your soil. Once installed, cut small holes to accommodate new plants or cut to fit your existing plants. If you have a flower bed wider than the roll of landscaping fabric, make sure to overlap the strips of fabric and secure your landscaping installation with staples.

Mulching Flower Beds

Mulch

Installing mulch throughout your flower beds is typically done once or twice each year. Many people install mulch while performing spring landscaping duties and when preparing their landscape beds for winter.

Keeping a fresh coat of mulch in your flower bed not only protects your plants and prevents evaporation; it also helps to shade the soil. Since grass and weeds typically grow towards the sunlight, having mulch in your flower bed will greatly reduce the unwanted growth.

Groundcover Plants

Similar to installing mulch in your flower bed, planting groundcover plants is also a great strategy for keeping grass out.

Groundcover plants not only shade the soil, but they also provide an additional barrier both above the ground and below as their rooting structure develops. Effective groundcover planting also serves as natural mulch, reducing your overall landscaping maintenence costs.

Stone Landscape Edging

Landscape Edging

Another method of controlling unwanted weeds and grass in plant beds would be to install metal or stone landscape edging.

Landscape edging can be purchased in a narrow metal strip and installed by driving attached stakes directly into the ground. You can also find landscape edging in a composite bender board that’s a bit more expensive, but much easier to install and cut.

One of the most common landscape edging materials however is natural stone. To install a natural stone landscape edging, you will need to dig a 2 inch trench around the perimeter of your landscaping beds and lay the stone inside the trench. Depending on the height of your flower bed, several rows of stone can be stacked to create your edging also known as dry-stacking stone.

Mortared Stone Retaining Wall Footing

Retaining Wall Footing

Since Bermuda sod grass and others grow on runners several inches below the soil line, one of the most effective ways to prevent it from invading your flower bed is to install a concrete footing that your stone retaining wall or landscape edging will sit on.

To install a concrete footing for your stonework, you will need to create a trench approximately 4 inches deep by 4-5 inches wide and pour at least 3 inches of concrete, reinforced with rebar. Once dry, you can install your landscape stone edging.

Properly Watering Plants

Proper Watering

Just as grass will naturally grow towards the sunlight, it will also reach out to find a water source. Because of this, proper watering is essential for the plants in your flower bed and to avoid excess watering that unwanted grass & weeds will seek out to invade your flower beds. In addition, keep an eye out for any low spots in your flower bed to prevent pooling.

If you have a mortared stonework or landscape edging installed around your flower bed, make sure you have small weeping holes installed to allow excess water and runoff to exit the flower bed.

In order to keep grass out of your flower beds, we would strongly recommend a combination of these strategies. First and foremost, keep a close eye on your watering and have a dense layer of mulch installed throughout the plant beds. These two things alone will go a long way to keeping unwanted weeds and grass at bay. Follow those 2 strategies by installing some type of landscape edging for the best results.

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