The installation of geotextile membrane is one approach you can rely on when it comes to the ongoing battle against weeds. Weeds can thrive beneath garden decking, often with plenty of room to grow and really take hold. You can try to deal with this at deck level, pulling out the portion of the weeds that finds a way out between the timber boards, but in the long term you’ll be fighting a losing battle.
Weeds need to be stopped at their source, and once your decking is in place, weed killer just isn't a viable option. This is where the use of a weed barrier comes in.
A versatile product, geotextile membrane is also highly effective when used under gravel – from garden pathways to larger areas. Undeniably, part of the appeal of gravel in landscaping is that it’s lower maintenance than a lawn.
It doesn't need regular mowing, but it’s worth remembering that without a proper barrier in place, your gravel is still vulnerable to weed growth. Similarly, a gravelled driveway has the potential to lend your front garden a smart appearance – but the effect will be ruined somewhat if it’s covered in weeds.
How it Works
As for the science behind it, geotextile membrane works in two main ways. First, the strong and durable material acts as a physical barrier to prevent weeds from penetrating. Secondly, it blocks out sunlight, which means that weeds don’t receive the UV rays they require to feed their growth.
That’s not to say that you can’t still do some planting in your garden, even in areas covered by the membrane. Small slits can be cut in the fabric, enabling you to push seeds and plug plants through. Alternatively you can utilise raised beds, or strategically placed planters. The membrane can even be used to give your flower borders a helping hand.
Laying geotextile membrane is a straightforward task, but the barrier will only be effective if it’s correctly installed. You’ll need to begin the job by levelling out the ground you’re going to be working on. Once that’s done, simply spread out the barrier. It’s important not to leave any gaps between sheets, and to smooth out any air pockets under them – the key thing to remember is that you don’t want to leave any space for weeds to flourish in future years. Next, secure the sheet firmly into position with specially designed fixing pegs.
Finally, cover with gravel to hold it down. Then sit back and relax, safe in the knowledge that the weeds will be kept at bay.
Available in a range of widths from 1m to 3.3m, geotextile membrane can be purchased by the roll or in shorter lengths. This ensures that waste is kept to a minimum, making the installation highly cost-effective. Fixing pegs are available in packs of ten.
Contact AVS to talk over your requirements – we have the answers to all of your questions, from the best way to lay membrane beneath decking to the quantity of fixing pegs to use for optimum performance.