Old carpet

Gail(z7bGA)September 8, 2005

Anyone ever use old carpet to cover weedy areas?

When I came home from work, I noticed one of the apartments across from my house was having new carpet installed. I asked what they were going to do with the old stuff; they said toss it in the landfill. I asked if I could have it to cover the weeds in the backyard and they said "sure" but backed away from the nutty lady.

I dragged it home and the backyard (which no one sees) looks like a patchwork quilt of carpet (which, to be honest, looks better than what I have inside my house).


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Depends on what kind of weeds you're talking about. I tried this once under my compost pile to try to keep the Bermuda Grass from invading. Suffice to say, it was not one of my finer moments ;)

The rhizomes grew right thru and when I tried to pull up the carpet a couple of years later I strained my back badly, (I was hurting for months).

If you were to try this technique with something like oxalis or spurge you might have better luck.


    Bookmark   September 8, 2005 at 11:03PM
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tulips91(z6 MO)

Interesting... we're pulling up our carpet right now.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2005 at 4:05PM
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Just don't use it near food crops since there are a million chemicals involved with carpet manufacture. Also, if seeds fall on it, they might sprout and grow right in the carpet, plus, you may be inviting mold to grow, depending on the fiber. I use carpet as a pathway through the mud under my deck.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2005 at 2:02AM
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basstlvr(z6/7 TN)

I have used room sized rugs for this purpose for 4 years now. It started because I wanted to kill grass in a full sun area & wanted to get rid of old rug smelling of dog! I never considered the chemicals but have been lucky so far. I only left the rug down long enough to kill the grass then added compost, peat moss etc. and mulch. The 8'by 10' size was just right for me to amend the soil & plant one season at a time. This year I used newspaper in 4-5 layers as suggested by several GW forums as I don't have to move them like I did the rug.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2005 at 12:50AM
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katie_in(zone 5b IN)

Has anyone taken old carpet and then placed gravel on top of it?

Would that work or are we wasting time and alot of heart ace later?

We don't plan on pulling this up or growing anything there - just trying to kill the weeds then keep them from coming back.
Thank you

    Bookmark   May 24, 2008 at 11:48PM
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I don't have any experience with carpet, but I do with landscape fabric. Rocks wear holes in the fabrics and then weeds/seeds poke their way through. And then it's very difficult to pull weeds that spread by rhizomes and roots. Dandelions are easy, though! I imagine something like this could happen with carpet. I suppose if you aren't planning on planting the area ever you would be okay, just spray roundup as needed.

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 9:19PM
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Carpet is a temporary smothering device and maybe also good for paths. As far as how safe it is - I dunno, probably depends on the kind of carpet. I made the mistake of leaving out some carpet after it degraded a bit when I tried to use it to smother some english ivy (a pointless task). Now I have a tattered carpet with english ivy growing through it and over it, etc.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2008 at 9:04PM
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