If you’re not sure how to mulch your garden, we’ve got some tips and tricks to help! Read on to find out how to mulch your garden, the RIGHT way!
Mulch is really important for any garden, not only does it conserve moisture and enhance plants, it’s also an erosion buster! If you’re having a weed problem, mulch helps by stopping weeds from taking root. On hot days, the mulch helps shade the roots of your plants.
The first thing when it comes to applying mulch is do you want organic or inorganic? Organic mulch is wood, bark, compost, leaves, and grass clippings. It will eventually decompose and improve the soil as it’s decomposing. Stone is a more permanent mulch. It’s a low-maintenance option but it’s not easy to plant in. When choosing a mulch, you need to decide if you will need to do any gardening that requires digging and moving the mulch around. If so, choosing an organic mulch would be a better option.
Now you need to pick the right mulch, since every mulch is different. For example, bark nuggets can float away if there is heavy rain. Cocoa hulls have an aroma, but are expensive and are toxic to dogs. Most choose shredded bark or wood, as it’s inexpensive and easy to apply. The con is that it doesn’t add as many nutrients to the soil as other mulches.
If you’re on a budget, you can use your yard waste as mulch. Grass clippings, leaves, and compost are all good mulch. Although compost adds tonnes of nutrients, it isn’t very good at keeping weeds at bay. Grass clippings can be effective, but don’t pile them too deeply because they can get soggy. Remember not to use grass clippings that have been treated with herbicides. If you decide to use leaves, make sure to shred them first. Pine needles are a great choice because they last a long time, and work well with azaleas (and other acid-loving plants), since pine needles acidify soil.
Don’t spread the mulch too thickly, and don’t spread it too thinly, either. Spread the mulch 2-3 inches thick. If it’s thicker, it could attract pests. You can apply mulch any time, as there isn’t a specific time you need to mulch your plants. Plants will accept mulch any time of the year. If you decide to apply mulch in the winter, wait until the ground freezes before mulching.
Photos: Eco Pro Mulch, Look Home Design, The Floor Decor.