Regaining control of my garden beds

jem199May 27, 2010

Hi, I suffered a stroke a couple of years ago and was not able to maintain my flower beds. My family, friends and neighbors helped some, but they were mostly caring for me and my family. Now my perennial flowers are still alive, albeit among many weeds. ThereÂs grass, clover, chickweed, speedwell, and a few plantain and dandelions.

Before I was ill, I would dig out all the weeds by hand, add manure and mulch. It was a 1-2 day job each spring since the mulch kept the weeds down. I spray garlic water on the leaves when I see insect holes and that seems to take care of everything. I prefer not to use chemicals, but have been using sparingly to regain control of things.

I am well enough to take care of my beds now. Could you suggest some efficient ways to clean things up? IÂm not as nimble and the task looks overwhelming at this point. On a cool day, my husband put plastic shopping bags over my 5 herb plants in that bed and sprayed the weeds with Round Up. When the round up was dry, he removed the bags. That worked great there. But the perennials are too large and numerous. Is there an efficient way to get the grass and weeds out of there so I can get back to normal garden maintenance? A friend suggested I concentrate on the grass and large weeds, then to put several layers of wet newspaper and brown paper bags over the small weeds which would eventually kill them. Please let me know your thoughts on this and I would appreciate any tips and suggestions you can provide.

Thank you!

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Kimmsr(4a/5b-MI)

Depending on the grass covering that, and the other "weeds" with newspaper and covering the newspaper with some othe mulch material can work because that will deprive the plants of access to the sunlight they need to grow so they will die, and the nutrients those plants removed from your soil will be recycled back into that soil.
If the grass is an invasive species, such as Quack grass, Bermuda, etc., then digging it out is the only real option.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2010 at 8:40AM
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jem199

I cut everything down and chopped it up a bit. I threw out any seed heads. I'm going to cover it with newspaper and I bought several bags of mulch. This was soo much easier than pulling out weeds. It looks so much nicer already and I only spent a couple of hours.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2010 at 10:36AM
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