How to Apply Landscape Fabric Around Shrubs


Weeds growing beneath shrubs will compete for soil nutrients. Controlling weeds and grass from growing under shrubs will help keep your shrubs healthy and thriving. Prevent weeds before they begin by covering the soil with a barrier. Apply landscape fabric around shrubs to smother weed growth and prevent them from encroaching upon your shrubs. With minimal work to prevent weeds before they begin, you can keep shrubs attractive in your landscape.

Small Shrubs

Step 1

Cultivate the soil lightly with a hand rake to eradicate any existing weeds before you lay down the landscape fabric. Take care not to disturb the shrub roots as you cultivate the soil.

Step 2

Cut a piece of landscape fabric that will extend out past the outer perimeter of the shrub.

Step 3

Find the center of the piece of landscape fabric and cut a large "X" in the fabric to enable you to install the fabric over the shrub.

Step 4

Fit the fabric over the top of the shrub, moving it carefully down over the shrub to avoid damaging the shrub as you position it.

Step 5

Arrange the fabric over the soil. Place the flaps of the "X" together to cover the soil adequately beneath the shrub.

Step 6

Cover the fabric with between 2 and 3 inches of mulch, spreading the mulch evenly over the entire area. The mulch will hold the landscape fabric in place.

Large Shrubs

Step 1

Cultivate the soil lightly a the hand rake to remove weeds from the area. Avoid disturbing the shrub roots as you cultivate the soil.

Step 2

Cut two pieces of landscape fabric to piece together the soil coverage. Make the pieces long enough to cover the entire area beneath the shrub.

Step 3

Place the two pieces of fabric beneath the shrub, centering them evenly. Overlap the two pieces along the center seam by approximately 3 inches and cut out half-circles in each of the fabric pieces to accommodate the stem of the shrub.

Step 4

Cover the fabric with between 2 and 3 inches of mulch, and spread it out evenly over the area. The mulch will keep the landscape fabric in place.

Things You'll Need

  • Hand rake
  • Scissors
  • Mulch (stones, rocks, wood chips or bark)


  • Weed Stop: How to Install Landscape Fabric
Keywords: apply landscape fabric, beneath shrubs, prevent weeds, smother weed growth

About this Author

Kathryn Hatter is a 42-year-old veteran homeschool educator and regular contributor to Natural News. She is an accomplished gardener, seamstress, quilter, painter, cook, decorator, digital graphics creator and she enjoys technical and computer gadgets. She began writing for Internet publications in 2007. She is interested in natural health and hopes to continue her formal education in the health field (nursing) when family commitments will allow.