Wooden bark or Gravel???

Janelle O\’Callaghan asked 13 years ago

Gerry, Need your opinion please. I am putting down shrubbery beds and have received different feedback – for a low growing shrubbery bed (54ft long x 24ft wide) would you put down gravel or wooden bark to cover a weed blanket? People tell me gravel is better as wooden bark fades after the first year and looks dirty…I want it to look nice but with very little maintenance….as I am conscious that really it is only going to need to look well until the shrubs develop and fill up over a few years….

1 Answers

Gerry Daly Staff answered 4 years ago
Bark breaks down quickly .. in about two years. Gravel lasts but eventually gets clogged with fallen leaves.

A membrane to prevent weeds looks ugly on its own  and needs to be covered. It tends to hold leaves also.

A bed of shrubs that will fill in is better off with just bark mulch, no membrane, for its first couple of years as the  plants soon provide their own ground cover weed control.

Weed control membrane and gravel are best in  an open area with just a few plants dotted around in the gravel.