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Home > Types of Gardening > Ornamental Gardening > Weeds
Weeds
WeedsA weed is defined as a plant growing in a place where it is not wanted. White clover may be a detested plant in the garden but to a sheep-farmer it represents high quality stock food. Weeds will always appear in the ornamental garden, whether they germinate from seeds that may have lived in the soil for more than 10 years, are blown by wind, arrive with new plants or are carried in by birds or animals. Weeds not only spoil the look of the garden but can also compete with ornamental plants. A layer of mulch, such as straw or bark, can prevent weed seeds from germinating.

Well-planned gardens will have plants covering much of the soil surface at all times, giving weeds little opportunity to germinate. Hoeing or digging the garden may actually encourage weeds by disturbing the soil and exposing the seeds so they can germinate. If you are establishing a new garden, particularly if it is from an area previously in lawn, perennial weeds (which now include grass!) are best removed by spraying with a herbicide. The most common method of weed removal in the ornamental garden is by hand. This can be very healthy, providing exercise, time out in the fresh air and a chance to forget the stresses of everyday life.

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