It's not that I work harder than those other gardeners, in fact I tend to be on the lazy side. The secret to a weed free garden is in the preparation. A little work in the spring saves hours and hours of weeding on your hands and knees, and eliminates the need for toxic chemicals and sprays.
In the top photo, our tomato plant is
started and planted, but after several days of record heat, then rain, then sunshine, you can see the little weeds are starting to sprout alongside the fruit.
This is the time I take that huge stack of newspaper I've been saving and spread it on top of the weeds (I don't pick them, just block precious sunlight from them). Then I top the newspaper off with a few handfulls of dirt to keep it from blowing about. After that I hose down the paper to make it wet, adding weight to it and making it stick together and to the ground.
Once the garden is covered with wet newspaper I cover that with some compost. Straw, wood chips, shredded paper or mulch do the same thing, but since we have compost we get for free, that's what we use.
Once the newspaper is topped off (picture 3) the garden is beautiful and weed free.
We continue to cover the top layer with grass cuttings (from our bagger mower). The newspaper, unlike plastic, will rot on it's own and add to the garden.
A few weeds will poke up here and there, but for the most part, we're weed free for the summer.