Complete Guide on How to Use Shade Cloth in Your Garden

Complete Guide on How to Use Shade Cloth in Your Garden

A garden is a place where you can unwind and relax after having a stressful day. As a homeowner, you have to ensure your garden is well-maintained and thriving. However, maintaining your garden during harsh, extreme Australian weather can be challenging.

By simply adding a shade cloth in your garden, you are protecting your plants from the harsh sunlight and external elemental exposure. In Australia, shade cloths are considered a must-have in the garden due to experiencing changing extreme weather conditions. 

Shade cloth is often used to provide wind, dusty and debris control in the construction industry. However, this woven material has become extremely popular among gardeners for its durability and protection against external elements.

Besides, adding shade cloth is an inexpensive and effective method to ensure fruitful gardening. Shade cloths are available in a wide range of styles, thicknesses, and colours that can match your garden and exterior decorating needs. 

In this article, we will highlight everything about shade cloth in the garden - from uses, types to density percentage. 

How and Where Can I Use Shade Cloth in My Garden? 

Sunlight is essential for the growth of plants. However, one must understand that different plants have different light and heat requirements that need to be considered. Having a shade cloth will protect your plants from the extreme summer heat and allow an adequate amount of sunlight to your plants. 

Here are a few ways to use shade cloth in your garden: 

  • If your plants are sensitive to direct sunlight but require an adequate amount of warmth, you can place shade cloth on the inside of your transparent greenhouse.
  • You can place shade cloth over freestanding patio covers and ferneries.
  • Use it to create shade houses.
  • Used to raise garden beds with solid arching.
  • Cover and wrap shade cloth for multiple gardening purposes. 

Buy premium quality garden wares using AfterPay. 

What Are the Different Types of Shade Cloth? 

There are two types of shade cloths - Knitted and woven. 


Knitted shade cloth is fabricated using lightweight polyethylene - a common material used to cover shade houses and greenhouses. The weight of the knitted shade cloth is light but equally resistant to wear and tear.

Such shade cloth types offer durability and flexibility, making them resistible to most chemicals and detergents used while gardening. Knitted shade cloth has a longer life expectancy than woven. Using knitted shade cloth for gardens will permit different levels of sun penetration and heat to your plants. 


Woven shade cloth is fabricated using 100% polypropylene, which allows more heat build-up than knitted. Being UV stabilised, it can withstand extreme sun exposure and ensure complete protection of your plants.

The weight of woven shade cloth is a bit heavier than knitted cloth. Such shade cloth type is suitable for a variety of applications - patio shade, windscreens, privacy screens, and solar protection. 

What is Density Percentage? 

Apart from contemplating the level of UV protection for your plants, you should also consider what percentage of sunlight is ideal for the growth of your plants. Based on the plant types, here is the ideal density percentage of shade cloth that you should consider.


Density Percentage (%)

Recommended For


Best for heat tolerant plants (tomatoes, cucumbers, watermelon, strawberries and peppers)


For flowering plants.


For plants or herbs that are more sensitive to sunlight (lettuce, greens, spinach, dill, parsley and cilantro)

75% or higher

For ferns, orchids, and large olive trees. Also provide shade for people or animals.


Browse through our extensive collection of premium quality shade cloths to enhance your garden outlook and protect plants from extreme external elements. You can also buy garden wares and homewares using AfterPay.


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