Farmer issues warning against a common yard maintenance item that may be killing your trees: ‘A big mistake’

A fifth-generation Colorado farmer is doing what she can to help others maintain their yards without inadvertently damaging them.

Earlier this year, TikTok user Briana Bosch (@blossomandbranchfarm) — of Blossom and Branch Farm in the Denver suburbs — shared a tip about how to correctly use landscape fabric.

The scoop

The 20-second clip showed how difficult it can be to get rid of the weed-preventing material, which may disrupt natural biological processes.

“Folks use it … as a weed suppressor UNDERNEATH mulch — which is a big mistake!” Bosch wrote in a caption. “What happens is the wood chips on top of the mulch just slowly break down into soil, and weeds grow on top of the fabric anyway!”

Bosch noted that professional growers use landscape fabric on top of the soil, then remove it each year and amend the soil.

“This method can actually be helpful for no-till growers who don’t use herbicides and have aggressively spreading weeds,” she wrote.

How it’s helping

The advice falls in line with other expert guidance.

Landscape fabric can be especially damaging to trees as well, preventing water, oxygen, and other nutrients from reaching roots.

“I have arguments about this stuff with people all the time! It’s awful!” one user commented. “I don’t know what the appeal is.”

Bosch replied: “They like spending money and doing extra work??”

What everyone’s saying

Other commenters noted that cardboard boxes and newspapers can also fill the role for which landscape fabric was created.

Some users lamented that their rental properties or the previous owners of their homes used landscape fabric, much to their chagrin.

“It took me two years to get all remnants of mine out & 5 to repair soil,” one commenter said. “Some parts still lack, but it’s far healthier.”

Even a landscape contractor said they didn’t recommend it.

“I tell people this all the time it’s just a gimmick,” they wrote. “There’s no solution to a weed-free yard.”

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