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Homeowner baffled by landscaping nightmare inherited from previous owner: 'Why would someone do this?'

"You have my sympathy."

"You have my sympathy."

Photo Credit: iStock

A baffled homeowner reached out to Reddit's r/landscaping forum for advice after discovering landscaping fabric buried beneath their lawn.

"Rototilling my backyard, I discovered landscaping cloth buried around 5 inches under dirt and grass. Why would someone do this?" wrote the Redditor. "No wonder I've had drainage issues."

According to the homeowner, the landscaping fabric was tangled in plant roots and was a mess to remove, flaking plastic pieces into the surrounding soil. 

Redditors sympathized with the homeowner and discussed the consequences of plastic landscaping fabric. 

"Over time dust, debris, vegetative material break down and create a soil layer on top of the weed barrier," commented one user. "That's why the weed barrier sucks and everyone should stop using it. It's a waste of time, money, and a massive nuisance down the road."

"You have my sympathy. My entire yard (front and back) was covered with black plastic sheeting," wrote another Redditor. "I've been pulling it up in sections for the past three years."

"Perhaps at one point there was a planting bed and later someone graded the area," responded one user.

Plastic landscaping fabrics are not only a hassle to remove but also detrimental to the environment. Over time, the fabric breaks down and leeches microplastics into the soil, which are toxic for plants and organisms. 

Instead of resorting to landscaping fabric, consider installing native plants in your yard to act as a natural weed control. By adding native plants to your lawn, you can also promote the growth of the local ecosystem, as native plants attract key pollinators, such as bees and butterflies. 

Growing native plants is also a great way to save time and money on lawn maintenance. Compared to grass lawns, native plants require less water. You can save around $225 on water, $50 on fertilizer, and $50 on pesticides and weed control each year when you switch to a natural lawn. 

Redditors emphasized the struggle of removing landscaping fabric and its devastating effects on the environment. 

"Second only to tree rings, IMO, this product is one of the most evil additions modern landscaping has brought to our age," wrote one user. "It starts out being permeable but with time the holes in the fabric get filled in, and you might as well have put down plastic. It is a soil killer and an offense against the environment."

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