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How do I renovate area under weed control fabric?

I have a small area (about 4 metre square) that has been under weed control fabric for 7 years and now I would like to remove the fabric and replant the site. However, the 'soil' under the fabric is heavy clay and looks to be devoid of organic matter, dead or alive. Can it be improved with organic matter as with any other clay soil or does it need special treatment? Is it better to remove some of the clay and add topsoil?


  • Dave MorganDave Morgan Posts: 3,123

    Just improve it with plenty of organic matter Angie. The more you add the better it will be. It may take a while for it to get back, but it will recover.

  • Birdy13Birdy13 Posts: 595

    Did someone mention weed fabric and path prep...?


     If anyone's interested I can start a new thread on how I am building my wiggly path - but not tonight, just too tired from trying to build my wiggly path... image


  • GillianBCGillianBC Posts: 121

    Loads of mulch, no need to dig.  Have a look at Back to Eden and permaculture on youtube.

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,051

    To-day we're about to tackle the same problem Angie.

    The fabric had a good few inches of gravel over it, so I've removed the fabric, raked the gravel back over the compacted clay soil evenly and to-day we'll be mulching very heavily and tomorrow, weather permitting will hire a rotovator and " do the needful" as they say in India.

  • Angie17Angie17 Posts: 3

    Thanks for the encouragement. The fabric was useful when it first went down but I didn't really think what it would do to the soil - should have of course. Nowhere for the poor worms to come up for air. I've made a start with mulching and will look on it as a long-term project!

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