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How do you handle your perennials?

15 years ago

I never had a perennial garden before I started putting it in in 2005, so last season was actually the first year the plants had flowers, thus seeds. So now I have small plants coming up, especially the Purple Coneflowers. I had mentioned on here before that I had put down landscape fabric in all my beds and people said that I should have just put it down in the paths and just used mulch or newspapers covered with mulch in my flower beds. I was also told that only weeds will come up in my flower beds and not the perennials. What I'm wondering now that I have small plants is will they live? I don't know if they can dig their way down through the landscape fabric to the ground below or if they will just die out. Should I remove the little plants and the mulch and the landscape fabric and then put down newspapers and mulch on top and put the plants back in? When people were answering me and someone mentioned my perennials beds "filling in", I'm not sure how to let them fill in. Since I never had perennials before, I haven't a clue on how to maintain a perennial bed. Do you just let all of the seedlings go and may the best seedlings win? Obviously, you'd have to at least let some of them mature or the bed would never get filled in. I assume that the goal is to have solid perennials and therefore no or few weeds coming up. Now I'm wondering if I should go through all of my beds and tear out the landscape fabric. I know it's a lot of work but it's no more work than I've been doing lately with digging sod out by hand with a trowel to make more flower beds. Now that's work! I hope to be done by July. Since perennials don't bloom the first year anyway, I'm in no rush.

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