Newspaper weeds away. Start putting in your plants; work the nutrients into your soil. Wet newspapers and put layers around the plants overlapping as you go; cover with mulch and forget about weeds. Weeds will get through some gardening plastic; they will not get through wet newspapers.
Instead of putting rocks in the bottom of big porch planters, she fill the bottom with sealed empty plastic 20 ounce bottles! They give the pot the drainage it needs, without adding all that extra weight!