Mulch facts to ensure a better garden, landscape

Natural mulches maintain a healthy landscape

You put lots of time and energy into your garden. Did you know that using mulch will support your efforts and not only improve the visual aspect of your landscape, it will benefit your plants?

Mulch is nature’s carpet. It is a natural way to maintain a healthy landscape. Only mulch in well-drained areas. Mulching in poorly drained areas will cause the soil to retain too much moisture which will rot them, and may kill your plant.

Mulch Facts. Did You Know?

  • Mulch should be applied at a depth of 2-3 inches. Remember your plants need to breathe and too much mulch can suffocate plant roots and result in poor growth.
  • Mulch filters water.
  • Helps soil retain moisture in time of drought.
  • Limits weed growth and prevents germination of weed seeds.
  • Insulates tree and plant roots, helping root temperatures remain even.
  • Helps provide proper nutrients to the plants and trees, and enriches the soil.
  • Packed down mulch or “old” mulch can be freshened by raking it out, removing some of it and adding fresh mulch as a top dressing.
  • According to Clemson Extension Service, “Mulching is really nature’s idea.” Mulches enhance your landscape with color and texture. They also protect tender roots, help hold soil in place and preserve moisture in the soil.

Mulch Types & Advantages

Hardwood Mulch: Organic gardeners mulch of choice. Advantages to this type of mulch are that it decomposes quicker (when double ground) to add nutrients to your soil and does a good job at weed suppression. Shop for hardwood mulch.

Pine Bark Mulch: Great mulch for acid loving plants and is good for weed control. This mulch comes in a double ground size and a mini-nugget size. However, if your garden is low-lying, pine bark mulch (especially the mini-nuggets) will float if there is heavy rain. Shop for pine bark mulch.

Cypress Mulch: Golden in color in its natural state, this mulch decomposes more slowly than any other mulch. Shop for cypress mulch.

Cypress Chips: Wood chips are great for playgrounds and are specifically designed and engineered to cushion falls. They may be used in beds and break down quickly, removing nitrogen from the soil. So when using these as mulch, plan to replace nitrogen through amendments. With any mulch, it is a good idea to keep wood products away from the base of your home at least 8 inches or more. Shop for cypress chips.

Pine Straw/Needles: Our long leaf pine straw is an attractive mulch that is used for more economical, large applications. Even though it adds nutrient value to your landscape beds, it is raked from the bottom of the forest floor so you will encounter some weed seed with this mulch compared to other mulches. Shop for pine straw and pine needles.

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