When it comes to landscaping fabrics, it’s all too tempting to assume one size fits all. And let’s be honest, most people are more concerned about what is visible above ground, rather than what lies beneath! However, the experienced landscaper knows that using the correct materials can mean the difference between a successful project with a truly professional and long-lasting finish, and one which just doesn’t cut the mustard. And we all know that having to rectify a landscaping job is a messy and time-consuming business, not to mention the cost.
Not all landscaping fabrics are the same
Landscaping projects are often embarked on because the project owner has an issue that they want to deal with – perhaps a slope is causing soil erosion, the water table is high, or the soil is compacted, leading to drainage problems. Or they might be fed up with navigating potholes on their drive, or having to remove invasive weeds every few months. Choosing the correct landscaping fabric can help to ensure that whatever the problem, it is dealt with properly, at source, meaning these issues don’t surface further down the line.
What could possibly go wrong?
Believe it or not, the strength and permeability of the landscaping fabric used can have a very lasting effect on the final project. For instance, if a generic standard weed membrane is used underneath a driveway (yes, we do see this happen!), it will simply not be strong enough to take the weight of vehicles and will not stabilise the ground. The driveway will then rut and sink, creating an uneven surface for the homeowner. A heavy-duty driveway membrane such as Drivetex is the correct fabric to use, because it doesn’t lose strength when buried in the ground – it can therefore stabilise the sub-base layers and keep the surface strong and smooth.
Is the fabric permeable enough?
It’s not just about choosing a product that is strong enough. Choosing a woven fabric that is strong but not permeable can be disastrous in gardens susceptible to drainage issues (due to a high water table, soil type or location of garden). Surfaces can become waterlogged, lawns become boggy, and plants are starved of oxygen. Where drainage is being incorporated into a project, a strong but permeable landscaping fabric such as Draintex should be used as a wrapping or lining to ensure that water can pass through. We have written in more detail on porous fabrics here.
Never ask simply for ‘landscape fabric’
As you may have gathered, we’re a little fussy about the term ‘landscape fabric’ at Growtivation! It’s fine as a collective term for the different membranes you might use underneath a job, but we like to be a bit more precise! We like to ask where the fabric will be going, what’s underneath it, what material is going on top of it, and what sort of traffic is expected? What other functions must it perform? There are lots of considerations, but it needn’t be complicated – that’s why Growtivation has developed a very clear system that helps buyers choose the right fabric for the job, every time. Our range is named accordingly, in a ‘does what it says on the tin’ style and the packaging on our products is colour coded, so it’s easy to tell which fabric is which. For instance, our Weedtex packaging is red – you can’t miss it in the aisles! We also have a product selector chart that helps both the merchant and the landscaper advise on the correct fabric for the job.
An entire range for every job
In short, we’ve made it our mission to make it easy to select the right fabric for the job, every time.
And we believe that having an entire range, clearly labelled, helps merchants, landscapers and project owners alike appreciate the fact that, where ‘landscape fabric’ is concerned, there is more than meets the eye. Even though landscape fabric is out of sight, it should not be out of mind; it should be a deliberate, informed choice, rather than a last-minute purchase!
Laying quality foundations
Whatever you’re doing above ground, needs to be supported properly with the right materials, of the requisite quality, below ground. A good rule of thumb is to choose a brand that the professionals use, because they will have enough projects under their belts to know what a difference it makes. Growtivation products undergo stringent quality control measures to ensure that the end user gets the result they want, every time. And we know that professionals with high standards of workmanship like to use our range because the products can be relied on to perform to the standards required.