I need weed advice

Hi All,
The weeds are winning.
I got down on my hands and knees with my knee pads
and gloves and took out two 45 gallon trash bags of
weeds this week. Mostly cheat grass. And that
is only 2/5 of the front yard. I have not started
my back yard yet.
I can not do this anymore. I am too old. And
it is a fire hazard.
The front yard, I will just have someone lay
down new plastic and re-rock it.
The back yard (my garden), I am thinking of having
someone put in tiles and raised beds:
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I am at a loss as to what to put down on the
rest of the yard. Tiles? Plastic decking?
Your thoughts?
Many thanks,
-T
Reply to
T
I have raised beds, and I laid down outdoor cheap carpet where I didn't want a raised bed. The weeds used to be horrible to deal with in the heat of the summer. Now, it's just very minimal weeding at best.
Reply to
Muggles
Do the weeds grow through the carpet?
Is there any chemical leaching from the carpet that might get in to my produce?
Reply to
T
There's the occasional random weed that might grow where you let debris build up, or at a seam here or there. The carpet is between the raised beds, so, I don't see how any leaching could get into the raised bed to affect the veggies. I've got photos! :)
Reply to
Muggles
T wrote:
sounds reasonable in an arid climate and very easy to care for for a while. in the end what matters a lot for installations of this kind are what kind of wind deposition of sand/dirt you might get and any weed seeds blow in on the wind also if you get any water run off across the area you need the rocks to be sized to keep erosion under control.
any gravel we put in here in some locations many years ago now has so much dirt in it and humus from the trees dropping needles that it can support plants growing. it needs to be taken up and cleaned out. which is more work than i want to do so we are letting some thyme grow in it and i try to keep the worst of the weeds out of it.
very expensive for some hunks of coated metal, but pretty much any raised bed i consider a waste of $ especially in an arid climate. how you going to keep them watered and from getting too hot? you may need some kind of shading.
how large an area?
i'm just remembering when you couldn't grow anything at all there. two bales of free organic material.
95% of the weeding i do here is using a stirrup hoe. which means i am standing up and scraping any weeds off at the surface. it is pretty quick and i can cover a few thousand square feet in an hour or two. once a week or so depending upon how much rains we've had. not many weeds survive this treatment.
the remaining close weeding is needed to get around plants in particular patches. this only has to be done when the garden plants are small and cannot shade the ground enough to prevent weeds from growing. after a few rounds of close weeding most gardens here are set for the rest of the summer unless we miss a few earlier.
you could probably put down thick black mil plastic and hold it down with some rocks and that would smother any areas you need to get back under control.
i much prefer using cardboard and woodchips but it sounds like you are worried about fire control there and we don't have that sort of problem.
using larger crushed and rinsed stone is ok but you do need to make sure it is down thick enough that any weed seeds that blow in cannot easily germinate. and having good borders along the gardens will keep any temporary weeds still alive under the black plastic from getting into your gardens. after a year or three anything under the black plastic will be dead.
songbird
Reply to
songbird
Thank you!
This?
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And use a rack the clean up the stalks with all the seeds on them? (They weeds all have seeds starting on them.)
Reply to
T
T wrote:
yes, they're well worth the investment IMO.
for harder soils and ones with more rocks they don't work as well, but for sandy soils or clay you can skim right across the surface.
once you have seeds for grasses you don't want to use those for anything other than burying pretty deeply. :( gotta get it out before it starts setting seeds. if the seeds are not viable and won't ripen once you cut the stalks that can be workable for some weeds/seeds, but i've never tested it out as to what stage that happens so i can't say.
if you have birds around that will eat them or other creatures then it isn't so bad, but basically i don't often let anything go to seed in the gardens if i can help it at all. it just makes life so much more difficult.
so the above hoe lets you get out and scrape the plants off so they will dry out in the sun once a week or as often as you can and get that done before they set seeds. you will have to do this several times for some plants before they will stop having enough energy to come up. every weed is different.
the area you have already cleared if you can keep hitting it with a scraper of some kind those grasses won't have a chance. just have to keep at it and that is the hard part for most people as they can't be as consistent as they would need to be to get rid of a weed.
this garden i needed to do a lot of prep work on to get it back into shape:
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this is what it looks like now:
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except it is surrounded by blooming daffodils now that i had to move from inside to around the edges. i can stirrup hoe that entire garden in a few hours. close weeding along the edges is a lot more time because i have creeping thyme growing along there now that i enjoy sitting there and weeding. that takes a bit longer depending upon how much grass seeds get scattered from the lawn mower along the edge. if i could get rid of the grassy area along the edge i could save myself quite a bit of extra work. grasses always like to spread into the neighboring gardens and cost me a lot of time weeding.
the creeping thyme looks like:
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because those two edges are not along grassy areas there are not that many weeds in there as compared to along the further edge where it runs along the grass. i only have to spend a few hours here or there twice a month to keep those edges fairly cleared of weeds. it does take good vision and close-up work as i'm tracking down very fine grass plants as they are trying to get sprouted and growing. as i keep at it there are fewer and fewer i have to find but always a few as the birds and other animals can move some seeds around.
still i would much rather be weeding than mowing so... it is all good. i enjoy the work. :)
songbird
Reply to
songbird

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