It’s no secret that landscaping fabrics, also known as weed control fabric, can be an extremely effective tool to block weed and other invasive plants from growing in your flower beds. But of course, not all types of landscape fabric are created equal.

In fact, there are many heavy-duty fabric options that can be used for a variety of different construction projects both in your garden and beyond. And once you know how to pick the best landscape fabrics for your needs, you’ll be able to lay a stable foundation for almost any outdoor D.I.Y. project.

Here’s what you need to know…

What Is Landscape Fabric?

Typically, landscape fabric is used to create a physical barrier between the soil and whatever surface you’re attempting to create. That’s why these materials are made using polypropylene fabric, which is commonly used for industrial purposes. This type of fabric is highly durable, making it a great choice for anyone looking to reduce their long-term maintenance needs.

With that being said, there are two main types of landscape fabric that you will come across when shopping for materials.

Non-Woven Landscaping Fabric

One of the most common landscaping fabrics is non-woven geotextile fabric. This type of polypropylene fabric is designed to act as a solid ground cover, meaning it doesn’t include perforated holes. This feature makes it a good choice for soil stabilization but limits the permeability of the area you’ll be using it in.

Woven Landscaping Fabric

The next most commonly used landscaping fabric is woven geotextile fabric. As you might have guessed, woven fabrics are made using finely laced threads of polypropylene fabric. This allows water and other soil nutrients to easily permeate its surface, which is why this option is often used around trees and shrubs.

When Should You Use Landscape Fabrics?

You probably already know that landscaping fabrics can be used to maintain a healthy, vibrant lawn. But preventing weeds from growing is far from being their only benefit. You may want to install landscape fabric for…

Parking Areas

Whether you’re building a D.I.Y. parking pad or installing a gravel driveway, landscape fabric can be used to help you create a stable foundation for your project. And since these fabrics are considered heavy-duty, they can easily withstand the weight of vehicles ranging from family cars to RVs.

Barns & Stables

Another great use for landscaping fabric is around barns and horse arenas. When you’re working with live animals, sinking into the soil can pose a serious health and safety risk. These fabrics can help you maintain your property and care for your livestock with minimal maintenance.

French Drains

If you’ve ever considered installing a french drain on your property, then you probably know that these drainage systems require a permeable covering. Perforated landscape fabrics offer a great way to protect your drain, while still allowing water to flow freely.

Small Structures

When preparing to build a small structure like a shed or storage unit in your yard, it’s crucial to ensure that the ground is as stable as possible. Landscaping fabrics can be used under these structures to create a reliable base that stands the test of time, even if harsh weather conditions.

What Are The Benefits Of Using Landscape Fabric?

Besides acting as a weed control fabric, different types of landscape fabrics can give you the support you need to build a D.I.Y project that actually lasts. That’s because geotextile fabrics act as a base beneath the ground’s surface, preventing the elements from damaging your project over time. The main benefits of using landscaping fabric are…

Soil Stabilization

One of the biggest benefits of using landscaping fabric is that it holds the soil, and any surrounding features, securely in place. This type of soil stabilization can be used around garden areas, as well as under gravel and other infill materials. In the long term, it can help you reduce your maintenance needs and cut back on any repair costs.

Evaporation Management

If you’re looking to enhance the health of your plants, using a landscape fabric is a great way to increase moisture in the soil without excessive watering. For example, woven fabrics can be used to slow down evaporation. This allows your trees and shrubs to absorb more water, even in dry months.

Erosion Control

On the other hand, areas that experience heavy rains and other harsh weather conditions may deal with extreme soil erosion. In this case, landscaping fabric is a highly effective erosion control tool that prevents the ground from deteriorating. With this physical barrier in place, you can stop your soil from washing away and potentially damaging your property.

F.A.Q’s About Landscape Fabrics

“Should I use geotextile or plastic landscape fabric?”

If you’ve ever shopped for landscaping materials, you’ve probably noticed that plastic coverings are often sold alongside geotextile landscape fabrics. And while these materials can serve similar purposes, there are some distinct differences that you should know about.

In general, geotextile fabrics have been specially treated to withstand extreme weather conditions and support lasting soil stabilization. In contrast, traditional plastic has not been designed with these features in mind, meaning that it will require more regular maintenance and may need to be replaced periodically.

Here’s a side-by-side look at geotextile vs. plastic landscape fabrics…

Geotextile Fabric

  • Can be either woven or non-woven depending on your project needs
  • Made using a heavy-duty polypropylene fabric
  • Specially treated to be heat and UV-resistant, so it won’t deteriorate when placed in direct sunlight
  • Perforated holes can be used to allow seamless evaporation
  • Lasting soil stabilization and erosion control tool

Plastic Fabric

  • Available only as a flat plastic sheet
  • Made using standard plastic materials
  • Likely to breakdown if exposed to sunlight or other harsh weather conditions
  • Does not come with perforated holes, which can threaten plant life
  • Will need to be replaced to maintain reliable soil stabilization

While plastic sheets may seem like a more affordable option, the truth is that geotextile landscaping fabric is almost guaranteed to save you time and money in the long term.

“Can landscape fabric be used under gravel?”

Since landscaping fabric is considered a versatile material, it can easily be used in construction projects. This includes being used under gravel and other popular infill materials. That means you can rely on geotextile landscaping fabrics for a wide range of D.I.Y. projects, such as driveways, parking pads, storage areas, and more.

“Is landscape fabric the same as filter fabric?”

Another common question that buyers have is whether landscape fabric and filter fabric are the same things. This can be a tricky topic since certain types of landscape fabrics are typically used in french drains and other filtration systems.

However, it’s important to remember that not all landscape fabrics will work in these scenarios. That’s why only fabrics with perforated holes should be used as filter fabric, allowing water to adequately drain out of the system.

Where Can I Find High-Quality Landscape Fabric?

Picking the best landscape fabrics can seriously impact the success of your next D.I.Y project.

At Performance Footing, we specialize in both woven and non-woven geotextile fabrics, and our team is here to help you determine which types of landscape fabrics are best suited to your needs.

Contact us to learn more about our professional-grade geotextile fabrics today.