Levi Reeves - April 5, 2023

Ground Cover Fabric 101

Ground cover fabric, also known as landscape fabric or weed barrier, is a material that is used to cover the soil in gardens, landscaped areas, and agricultural fields. It is a permeable material that allows water and air to penetrate, but blocks sunlight and prevents weed growth. Ground cover fabric is available in various types and materials, each with its unique features and benefits.

The use of ground cover fabric has become increasingly popular among gardeners and landscapers due to its numerous benefits. It not only helps in weed.suppression but also improves soil quality, moisture retention, and erosion control, making it an essential tool.in landscaping and agriculture.

In this blog post, we will explain the different types of ground.cover fabric, their benefits, and installation instructions. We will also discuss the environmental concerns associated with their use and offer sustainable alternatives to traditional ground cover fabric. By the end of this post, you will have a better understanding of ground cover.fabric and its importance in maintaining a healthy and beautiful garden or landscape.

Nursery Pots over Ground Cover Fabric

Quick Summary

What is it?
Ground Cover Fabric is a geotextile landscape fabric used primarily for weed prevention.

Why use it
It can be used to block weeds, prevent soil erosion, and to regulate soil temperature.

How to install it?

The installation method will vary basic on the application, but the general installation method is to measure how much fabric is needed, grade/prepare the soil surface, roll out the fabric, stake it down, and cover with dirt, mulch, or gravel.

Types of Ground Cover Fabric

Landscape fabric is available in different types, each with its unique properties and benefits. Here are the most common types of this fabric:

1) Woven vs. Non-Woven

Woven fabric is made from woven polypropylene or polyester fibers, which are tightly woven together to create a durable and long-lasting material. Non-woven fabric is made from a blend of fibers that are pressed together to create a felt-like material. These fabrics are easy to install and are also more flexible, making them ideal for use in curved or irregularly shaped areas.

2) Biodegradable vs. Non-Biodegradable

Biodegradable fabric is one that is made from natural materials. The most common material for biodegradable material is jute. Apart from it hemp or cotton is also used. This material break down over time and decompose in the soil. Biodegradable fabric is an environmentally friendly option because it decomposes and don’t leave any toxic chemicals in the soil.

Non-biodegradable fabric are sheets of synthetic materials such as polypropylene or polyester. Non-biodegradable fabric is more durable as it does not decompose easily.

3) Different Materials Used in Ground Cover Fabric Production

Different materials are used as raw materials for producing landscape fabric. These materials can include recycled plastic bottles, plant-based fibers such as jute or coir, and natural materials like cotton or wool. Some fabrics are made from a blend of different materials to achieve specific properties like increased durability or moisture retention. Some blends may be composed of a mix of natural and synthetic fibers.

Preparing Backyard for Geo Fabric

Backyard Landscaping Project

Man Pulling Weeds

Pulling Weeds from Garden

Benefits of Using Ground Cover Fabric

Landscaping fabric has numerous benefits that make it an essential tool in gardening, landscaping, and agriculture.

In this section, we will explore some of the key benefits of using landscape fabric, including weed suppression, moisture retention, erosion control, temperature regulation, and protection against pests. Understanding these benefits will help you determine whether this fabric is the right choice for your gardening or landscaping needs.

1) Weed Suppression

Weed suppression is one of the most significant benefits of using geotextile fabric in gardening and landscaping. Weeds are a common nuisance in any garden or landscape, and they can quickly overtake the desired plants, depleting their resources and hindering their growth. Traditional methods of weed control (hand picking and use of herbicides) can be time-consuming, labor-intensive, and sometimes harmful to the environment.

Landscape fabric offers a more efficient and sustainable solution to weed control. When installed properly, the fabric forms a barrier that blocks sunlight from reaching the soil, preventing weed seeds from germinating and growing. The fabric also helps to conserve soil moisture, which can further inhibit weed growth.

Woven fabric is particularly effective at weed suppression because of its tight weave and durability. The fabric can withstand heavy foot traffic, and the tight weave prevents weeds from penetrating through the fabric. Non-woven fabric is also effective at weed suppression, but it may require a thicker layer to provide adequate weed control.

Using landscape fabric for weed suppression has several advantages over traditional methods. It is a long-lasting solution that requires little maintenance once installed. Moreover it is an environmentally friendly option.

Heavy-Duty Weed Barrier Fabric

All weed barrier is the same right? Wrong! Weed barrier often gets a bad rap because of the cheap stuff you can go pickup at your local garden center. No weed barrier is 100% effective but if you use the right stuff the amount of weeds in your landscape will be greatly reduced. We sell the right stuff.

View our Weed Barrier Fabric Sizes and Pricing

2) Moisture Retention

Moisture retention is another key benefit of using garden cover fabric in gardening and landscaping. Proper moisture management is essential for the healthy growth and development of plants. When soil moisture levels are inadequate, plants can become stressed, wilt, and even die. Landscape fabric helps to maintain soil moisture levels by reducing evaporation and protecting against water loss due to wind and runoff.

When installed properly, geo fabric can create a microclimate that promotes moisture retention. The water will pass through this fabric for plants to absorb. At the same time, the fabric blocks sunlight and reduces surface evaporation, helping to keep the soil moist and reducing the need for frequent watering.

The benefits of moisture retention in gardening and landscaping are numerous. Plants that receive adequate moisture due to use of this fabric are generally healthier and more robust. Second, moisture retention can help to conserve water, an increasingly important consideration in regions with limited water resources. Third, consistent soil moisture levels can improve plant growth and yield, resulting in a more abundant and attractive landscape.

Plant Growing In Landscape Fabric

Landscape Fabric With Plant

Gardener Planting Flowers

Flowers Being Planted

3) Erosion Control

Erosion control is another important benefit of using landscape fabric in gardening and landscaping. Soil erosion can be a significant problem, particularly in areas with sloping terrain or heavy rainfall. Erosion can lead to loss of soil fertility, damage to plant roots, and even property damage in extreme cases. The fabric can help to prevent erosion by stabilizing the soil and reducing the impact of rainfall and wind.

When installed on sloping terrain or in areas prone to erosion, landscape fabric can help to hold soil in place and prevent it from washing away. The fabric allows water.to pass through to the soil while providing a protective barrier that helps to absorb the impact of rainfall and reduce the risk of erosion. Additionally, the fabric can help to improve soil structure and prevent soil compaction, which can contribute to erosion.

The benefits of erosion control in gardening and landscaping are numerous. First, erosion control helps to protect the soil, preserving its fertility and reducing the need for soil replacement. Second, erosion control can help to prevent damage to plant roots as the soil remain intact and roots are not exposed to the air. Third, erosion control can help to prevent property damage by reducing the risk of landslides or other soil-related issues.

4) Temperature Regulation

Temperature regulation is another significant benefit of using landscape fabric in gardening and landscaping. Proper temperature management is essential for the healthy growth and development of plants. Extreme temperature fluctuations can stress plants, inhibit growth, and even cause damage or death. Ground cover fabric can help to regulate soil temperature, creating a more stable microclimate that promotes healthy plant growth.

The fabric acts as an insulator, helping to regulate soil temperature by reducing the impact of extreme temperatures. During hot weather, the fabric blocks sunlight and reduces surface evaporation, keeping the soil cooler and preventing root damage. During cold weather, the fabric helps to retain soil warmth and prevent the soil from freezing, protecting roots and promoting growth.

The benefits of temperature regulation in gardening and landscaping are numerous. The plant roots are protected from sever whether impacts. Second, temperature regulation can help to extend the growing season, allowing gardeners to produce crops for a longer period.

Nicely Landscaped Backyard

Backyard Landscaping

Weed Barrier Fabric With Gravel Over it

Gravel Added to Weed Barrier Fabric

5) Protection Against Pests

Geo fabric can provide a significant degree of protection against pests in gardening and landscaping. Pests can be a major problem for plants, causing damage to leaves, stems, and roots. Insects, rodents, and other small animals can also dig up plants, steal seeds, and disrupt the delicate balance of a garden or landscape. This fabric can help to prevent pests by acting as a barrier and making it difficult for them to access the plants.

Geo fabric is generally tough enough to stop pests from reaching the soil and plants beneath it. The fabric is made from durable materials which can resist tearing and puncturing. Some types of ground cover fabric are also treated with UV stabilizers and other additives to provide extra protection against pests and other environmental stressors.

The benefits of pest protection in gardening and landscaping are numerous. First, pest protection can help to prevent damage to plants, reducing the need for expensive pest control measures such as pesticides. Second, pest protection can help to promote healthy plant growth and higher yields, resulting in a more productive garden or landscape. Finally, pest protection can help to create a more sustainable and environmentally friendly landscape by reducing the need for harmful chemicals and pesticides.

How to Install Ground Cover Fabric

Installing the fabric can seem like a daunting task, but with a little bit of preparation and some basic tools, it is a straightforward process that even a novice installer can accomplish. Here are the steps to follow when installing geotextile fabric:

Plants in Geotextile Fabric

Plants Growing in Geo Fabric

Step 1: Clear the area Before installing the fabric: You need to clear the area of any debris, rocks, or weeds. This ensures that the fabric lies on a flat and smooth surface. Moreover there are no sharp objects that could puncture the fabric.

Step 2: Measure the area: Next, measure the area you want to cover with fabric.

Step 3: Cut the fabric using scissors or a utility knife: Cut the  fabric to the appropriate size and shape for the area you want to cover. Make sure to leave a little extra fabric around the edges to ensure complete coverage.

Step 4: Lay the fabric: Lay the  fabric over the area you want to cover, making sure it is lying flat and smooth.

Step 5: Secure the fabric: Using landscape staples or pins, secure the edges of the fabric to the ground. Make sure to space the staples or pins evenly, and be sure to use enough to keep the fabric securely in place.

Step 6: Cut holes for plants: If you plan to plant through the fabric, use scissors or a utility knife to cut holes in the fabric where you want to plant. Make sure the holes are just large enough to accommodate the plants you plan to use.

Step 7: Cover the fabric: If you want to conceal the fabric, you can cover it with mulch, stones, or other decorative materials. This will give your landscape a finished look and help to protect the fabric from the elements.

That's it! With these simple steps, you can install geotextile fabric and enjoy the benefits of weed suppression, moisture retention, erosion control, temperature regulation, and pest protection in your garden or landscape. Remember, proper installation is key to ensuring the fabric performs its intended functions, so take your time and follow these steps carefully.

Garden with Weed Barrier Fabric

Weed Barrier Fabric Used in Garden

Tips for Successful Installation

1. Use High-Quality Fabric: Choose a durable and high-quality fabric that is appropriate for the type of plants and conditions in your garden or landscape. A good-quality fabric will last longer and provide better protection against weeds and erosion.

2. Buy Enough Fabric: Buy a little extra fabric in case you need to make adjustments or cover additional areas.

3. Secure the Edges: Use landscape staples or pegs to secure the edges of the fabric to the ground. This will prevent the fabric from shifting or moving around, which can create gaps that allow weeds to grow through.

4. Cover the Fabric:
If you want to conceal the fabric, consider covering it with mulch, stones, or other decorative materials. This will help to protect the fabric from the elements and give your landscape a finished look.

Maintenance of Ground Cover Fabric

Maintaining geotextile fabric is relatively simple, but there are a few key things to keep in mind:

How to Maintain the Fabric

A. Inspect the Fabric Regularly:
Check the fabric periodically to ensure that it is still secure and in good condition. Look for signs of wear, tear, or damage, and address any issues promptly.

B. Remove Debris: Remove any debris, leaves, or branches that may accumulate on the surface of the fabric. This will help to prevent the growth of weeds and keep the fabric looking neat and tidy.

C. Check for Gaps: Inspect the edges of the fabric and look for any gaps or spaces where weeds may be able to grow through. Secure any loose edges and patch any holes or tears as needed.

D. Replace as Necessary: Over time, the fabric may begin to break down or lose its effectiveness. If you notice that weeds are growing through the fabric or erosion is occurring, it may be time to replace it.

Spreading dirt over weed fabric

Spreading Dirt Over Landscape Fabric

Couple Working in Garden

People Working in a Garden

Common Problems and How to Solve Them

Common problems that may arise with landscape fabric include shifting, tearing, or puncturing of the material. These issues can be addressed by securing the edges of the fabric, patching holes or tears, and using high-quality materials. If you are unsure how to address a particular problem, consult with a landscaping professional for guidance.


In conclusion, ground cover fabric is a valuable tool for gardeners and landscapers seeking to create healthier, more sustainable landscapes. By suppressing weeds, retaining moisture, controlling erosion, regulating temperature, and protecting against pests, the fabric can help improve plant health and increase the productivity of gardens and farms.

In summary, the benefits include:
· Weed suppression
· Moisture retention
· Erosion control
· Temperature regulation
· Protection against pests

When using landscape fabric, it is important to follow proper installation and maintenance techniques to ensure its effectiveness and longevity.

Backyard After Landscaping Project

Finished Backyard Landscaping Project

Woven geotextile fabric has many advantages due to its tensile strength and durability. Different materials are kept separated throughout construction projects thanks to the fabric's capacity to separate them.

Considering everything, woven geotextile fabric has a number of benefits that make it a useful product in a variety of applications, from engineering to gardening.