If you have been gardening for more than, oooh, maybe 15 minutes, you know that 99% of gardening is maintenance, and most of that is weeding, mulching to prevent weeds, and weeding some more. The actual planning and planting is a teeny tiny part of the gardening process.
I have stayed on top of exactly one of our garden beds this year - the top terrace bed is beautifully weed-free. Everywhere else is a disaster, but until I can get in and thoroughly weed and then do a lot of preventative mulching, it seems too big a job to tackle right now. Sooooo, one spot at a time until we get to the end... and then back we go (it's like painting the harbour bridge!).
I was working on the second terrace bed last week and thought I'd try a new-to-me product. Weed matting.
The one that I used is designed for a vege garden, but we never really get weeds in our raised beds (apart from pesky dill... we will never need to actively plant that herb/weed ever again!). This stuff is like rough craft paper, and it will break down over time into the soil. Unlike black plastic, it won't stop water or air penetrating the soil either.
I often use plain cardboard boxes torn up to achieve the same result over large areas, but it is cumbersome and usually too thick. This option was more suitable for the terrace garden beds, and it was easy to tear and work around the plants already in the bed. I just ripped it into size, laid it and covered it with a thick layer of mulch.
Now, to be perfectly fair, a thick layer of mulch in and of itself would probably have been enough for most areas of the garden. But this particular section of the garden bed has been overrun with couch grass, and I have been fighting a losing battle with it for too long. Hopefully this product will help.
I shall report back.