Marc, from Just Us Coffee’s demonstration garden in Grand Pré just dropped by to get some landscape fabric. He and Amy Lounder are setting up a comparison of weed control with and without landscape fabric in onions and strawberries. We can hardly wait to see the results. Amy has farmed here at Abundant Acres for the past two years and has observed our use of landscape fabric for weed control. It is useful for high-value, heat-loving crops like tomatoes, sweet potatoes, or melons, but it can also be used for crops like squash or brassicas. In the photo below, we were experimenting with planting many different crops into landscape fabric on raised beds.It reduces the need for tillage. Soil life (earthworms and ground beetles) really appreciate it. We also like it for season extension because the black fabric warms the soil in the spring and fall when ambient temperatures are lower. I also like it because it allows rain to penetrate to crop roots, but also prevents evaporation of precious moisture when it is dry. We apply landscape fabric over raised beds, cut holes, and plant transplants in the holes. The raised beds and black fabric help soil warm up and dry out a bit in spring. When there is too much rain (like last spring), it helped our garden produce crops early despite mucky conditions everywhere else. So it is helpful when it is too wet, too dry, or too cold. Landscape fabric lasts at least 15 years and if you take care of it, likely much longer.
I introduced myself to Marc, and I said “you are very tall.” His response was, “yes I am.”