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What are Drainage & Landscaping Fabrics?

When you’re landscaping a garden on a new build property, or just sprucing up an area of an existing site, one of the best ways to make it easier to manage is to use garden drainage fabric and landscaping fabric to keep it looking neat. While they’re broadly similar, geotextiles and weed control fabric actually have slightly different uses: weed control fabric sits under the soil or substrate and acts as a barrier to prevent unwanted plants from putting down roots. This is great not only for reducing the amount of time you or your client end up spending on weeding, but it also helps to stop invasive plants from damaging masonry with their roots, potentially saving on repair bills and time consuming work. Geotextiles also sit underneath, but rather than preventing weeds its primary purpose is to keep different layers of the aggregate below ground separate and to allow water to soak through, keeping the ground strong and level to prevent subsidence and cracks.

What Are The Benefits Of Using Drainage & Landscaping Fabrics?

Commonly called landscaping fabrics, geotextiles and weed control membranes are primarily useful for keeping the soil and aggregate beneath the surface strong and healthy so that it doesn’t wear out and change over time, whether through water ingress, weight from objects on the surface or the action of roots from weeds and other plants. By using drainage fabric and landscaping fabrics to keep the layers of soil and aggregate separate, you can prevent gaps and pockets forming that are caused by the layers mingling as they are compressed, as well as voids created by water washing away the layers as it soaks into the ground. This helps keep the whole area from moving over time, keeping the surface level as well. This isn’t just good for the ground itself, it’s also good for whatever is built on top of that ground. Everything from patios and paths to outbuildings and tarmac can crack and buckle if the ground underneath them moves, especially if they’re heavy and compress the soil, which can be an expensive problem to repair. Using drainage fabric and landscaping fabrics, whether it be damp proof membranes, Weedcheck Ultra, Stratacheck Plus Geotextile or another drainage fabric, all of these are designed to prevent building foundations from being damaged or weakened.

Different Types Of Drainage & Landscaping Fabrics

The primary difference between drainage fabric and landscaping fabrics is whether they are woven or non-woven, which describes how they are made. Woven geotextiles or weed membranes are like mesh, and are made from polypropylene strips woven together to create a tough and durable matt. These are perfect for use underneath heavy surface objects like patios and driveways because they’re so tough, but they’re also less good at draining the soil. Stratacheck Non-woven weed control fabric is fuzzy like felt and made by layering two polypropylene mats together, which makes them less durable, but their primary benefit is that they’re excellent at draining soil and preventing water from accumulating underground. They’re often used in underground drainage structures like roads and paths to prevent them from sagging and cracking as water erodes the soil beneath.

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