Mulching is one of the best things you can do to maintain an attractive, healthy garden, but did you know mulching will also save you time and money?
Here are the top five benefits of mulch:
1. It keeps weeds from sprouting. Mulch is an excellent solution for weed control because it keeps sunlight from germinating weed seeds. Every gardener fights an uphill battle against weeds, but if you are diligent about mulching, you won’t have to spend as much time pulling weeds by hand. Additionally, mulching can help you minimize, or even eliminate, the use of expensive herbicides (i.e. weedkillers) that are toxic to pollinators such as honeybees.
2. Mulch adds nutrients and enriches your soil. Mulch is an organic material that will eventually break down and enrich your soil with nutrients. This feeds healthy microbes and other living organisms, such as earth worms, that are essential to soil health. Also, as the mulch breaks down, it creates some space in the soil. This is ideal because a plant will be healthier when its roots are in a loose soil with room to grow, rather than a hard and compacted soil.
3. It minimizes plant loss and hastens recovery from a late frost. A layer of mulch will absorb heat from the sun’s rays. When the temperature drops below freezing, the soil will retain some of that heat under the mulch, increasing the odds of plant survival and recovery.
4. It saves you money on your water bill. Mulching helps retain moisture in the soil around your plants, so you won’t need to water as frequently. After rainfall, the mulch will slow down the rate of evaporation, keeping it moist longer.
5. Mulch makes your garden look tidier. When spread in and around garden beds, edges and along walkways, mulch gives your garden a fresher appearance.
Popular mulch materials include wood chips, shredded bark, composted leaves and pine straw. Cedar mulch is one of my favorites. There are also some “designer” options made from recycled pallets that are dyed with a vegetable-based colorant to various shades of walnut, black or red.
Do you need mulch delivered and/or installed, or just have questions about getting started with your DIY project? I’m happy to help! Call or text me at (919) 335-3326.