Mulching Tips from the Pros

A layer of mulch is the best way to ensure that the trees and bedding plants in your home grow well. Mulch retains moisture, adds texture and color, suppresses weeds, and acts as an insulator against soil erosion. Organic mulches have multiple benefits since they:

  • Act as a soil conditioner and prevent soil compaction
  • Encourage natural aerators like earthworms
  • Add nutrients into the soil like nitrogen, potassium, phosphorus, and other trace elements
  • Are a great way to recycle yard waste

Different Types of Mulch

You can use inorganic or organic materials for your mulch. The most common organic mulch materials include shredded bark, shredded leaves, straw, pine needles, and wood chips. Lawn clippings and crop by-products like cocoa bean and buckwheat hills or ground corncobs can also be used.

Inorganic mulches come in many different varieties, prices, and color. If you don’t know much about them, you should consult a professional landscaper to find you the best type of mulch to use for your garden.

How to Apply the Mulch

There are a few things you should take into consideration when you pick up the shovel and begin the mulching process.

  1. Once you have added a layer of mulch to the soil, do let it stay. If you remove the layer of mulch for any reason, later on, it will dry out the soil and can even injure the roots of the plants.
  2. You should take into consideration when you are mulching the garden. There are two main favorable periods for proper mulching. A layer of mulch can be added or maintain to the garden beds once spring has arrived and the ground has completely thawed. This layer should be at least two inches thick. You should also apply the mulch a second time in the fall season. This should be after the ground has frozen so that the mulch can insulate and protect the plants.
  3. Many homeowners make the mistake of making a mound of mulch around the trees. Mounding the mulch against the trunk of the tree will actually lead to pests, disease, and bark rot. It is better to spread the mulch around so that it extends will a couple of inches away from the base of the tree. The layer should be 3-4 inches deep and higher around the outside edges. Making a saucer shape will help the tree since the mulch will hold and distribute the water to the roots.
  4. Over application of the mulch can cause the roots to grow shallow. This will make them more susceptible to decay if dry periods arrive.
  5. Bark or woody mulch should be applied to areas where you will not be doing much digging. Focus on the flower bed and around the trees. Other light mulch can be worked into the soil in vegetable gardens since they are replanted often.

Mulching can be quite aesthetically pleasing and makes your landscape look more complete. More importantly, it can dramatically improve the quality of the soil in your garden.  You can also contact our professionals to mulch your yard if you are unsure how to mulch, incapable, or simply lack the desire.

Call Fresh Cut Lawn and Landscape for any questions regarding your mulching needs. We can be reached at (586) 739-6646 or (248) 650-3600.