Burlap Sacks vs Cloth Sacks for Gardening: Which is Better?

When it comes to gardening, choosing the right materials can make a significant difference in the health and productivity of your plants. Two popular options for sack gardening are burlap sacks and cloth sacks. Both have their pros and cons, and understanding these can help you make an informed decision.

burlap sacks vs cloth sacks for gardening
burlap sacks vs cloth sacks for gardening

Burlap Sacks

1. Natural and Biodegradable: Burlap is made from jute or hemp, which are natural fibers. This makes burlap sacks environmentally friendly as they decompose naturally, adding organic matter to the soil.

2. Breathability: One of the biggest advantages of burlap sacks is their breathability. The loose weave allows air to circulate around the roots of your plants, preventing root rot and other moisture-related problems.

3. Durability: Burlap sacks are quite sturdy and can hold up well under various weather conditions. However, they do break down over time, especially when exposed to moisture, which can be both a pro and a con depending on your needs.

4. Versatility: Burlap sacks can be used for various gardening purposes such as growing potatoes, storing produce, or even as a protective covering for plants during colder months.

Cloth Sacks

1. Reusability: Cloth sacks, often made from cotton or synthetic materials, are typically more durable over the long term compared to burlap sacks. They can be washed and reused multiple times, making them a cost-effective option.

2. Moisture Retention: Cloth sacks can retain moisture better than burlap sacks. This is beneficial in dry climates or for plants that require consistent moisture levels. However, this can also lead to issues with overwatering if not managed properly.

3. Lightweight and Easy to Handle: Cloth sacks are generally lighter and easier to handle than burlap sacks. This can make planting, moving, and storing them more convenient.

4. Variety of Sizes and Shapes: Cloth sacks are available in a wider variety of sizes and shapes, allowing for more flexibility in your gardening projects. This can be especially useful for small-space gardening or container gardening.

Which is Better for Gardening?

The choice between burlap sacks and cloth sacks largely depends on your specific gardening needs and environmental considerations.

For Organic Gardening: If you prioritize sustainability and organic gardening practices, burlap sacks are the way to go. Their biodegradability and natural composition make them an excellent choice for eco-friendly gardeners.

For Reusability and Durability: If you need a long-lasting solution and don’t mind washing and reusing your sacks, cloth sacks might be more suitable. They offer durability and moisture retention, which can be beneficial for certain types of plants and gardening environments.

Climate Considerations: In dry climates, cloth sacks’ moisture-retentive properties can be a boon. Conversely, in humid or wet climates, the breathability of burlap sacks can help prevent root diseases.


Both burlap and cloth sacks have their unique advantages for gardening. Burlap sacks are perfect for those who want a natural, biodegradable option that promotes healthy root systems through good air circulation. Cloth sacks, on the other hand, are ideal for gardeners looking for durability and reusability, with the added benefit of moisture retention.

Consider your gardening goals, climate, and personal preferences when choosing between burlap and cloth sacks. By understanding the benefits of each, you can select the best option to help your garden thrive.