By the time rain has made the land wet and ready to plant saplings, weeds also would be growing wildly. Some times I plant among weeds, and in no time, the saplings will be surrounded by weeds and later while cutting weeds, saplings also would be cut. When I was using brush cutter, in no time, the saplings will be completely cut, now a days I use only Scythe and it is much better now since the cutting pace is slow compared to brush cutter and also in between we look around, mostly saplings will be noticed.
Recently started putting sunhemp or green gram seeds around the the saplings, so that the patch of sunhemp or green gram plants will remind me of some saplings. Most of the time, when summer approaches, these guard plants can be retained so that they will provide some shade to the saplings,especially if it is sunhemp. Subash Palekar suggests to put pigeon pea while planting coconut saplings, so that they will provide nitrogen and shade in the summer.