Using old carpet and plastic is a tested way to help pesky weeds from attacking your beautiful begonias. Old carpets are popular choices for underlayment when constructing pathways, ponds and other types of water features. They require little effort to install and require no soil tilling, cultivating or weeding. There are a few things to keep in mind when using these alternative methods in order to make sure they are effective.
Recycling Is Cheap
In a time when DIY projects make spending big bucks seem strange, using old carpet is a great way to keep your money in your pocket and your garden looking fabulous. When using recycled carpet, the price is right. Old carpet is cheap and sometimes you can find some on the side of the road with a sign that says “free.” It doesn’t get much cheaper than that. It is also a good idea to recycle old carpets. If you simply throw them away, they will take thousands off years to decompose. Why not use old carpet in a productive way that can beautify your property?
Easy to Use
Old carpet is very easy to use. It is sturdy, so this makes it easy to cut and manipulate. When you are ready to plant, cut 1 foot squares from the rug. If you are planting tomatoes, then you want to space out the squares 3 feet apart in rows 3 feet apart. Separate the planting holes by 2 feet for other vegetables like green peppers, cucumbers and zucchini. The old carpet acts as a great weed suppressant. One of the biggest enemies to any garden is weeds. They invade your garden space and try to take over every natural resource. They can choke out all of your precious petunias and dry out your happy hydrangeas. Laying down old carpet as an underlayment will prevent weeds from growing up through the gravel or mulch. It does this while still allowing water to drain through to feed the plants you actually want to grow.
Allows Water In
All plants need water and sunlight. Adding old carpet as an underlayment can deprive unwanted plants, like weeds, from getting the life-sustaining UV rays. On the other hand, it will encourage your garden plants to grow because of the permeable mesh the carpet is constructed on. The mesh allows water to pass through and go down to the soil beneath, nourishing the roots of your garden plants. It is important to note that there are harmful chemicals in carpet. While the carpet is breaking down over time, these chemicals can leech into your soil.
There isn’t a laundry list of features the old carpet should have. Its use is very straight forward and clear. You want a carpet that will keep weeds out and let moisture in. When an old carpet does this, it will promote growth of the plants you want. Next time you have a garden project, consider riding around the block to see if your neighbors are throwing out some old carpet.