What is the purpose of mulch and when do you mulch?
Mulch serves multiple purposes. It is used to insulate plants, help with moisture retention, and assist with weed control. It also provides decoration in a plant bed. Most homeowners will wait until the leaf litter is removed before applying a three inch layer of mulch or pine straw.
What is a ‘cubic yard’ and how do I decide how many I need to order?
One cubic yard of mulch covers 100 square feet at three inches deep. To decide how many cubic yards of mulch to order, use the calculator provided on this site. You can also use a standard equation where you find the total square footage of the beds you want to cover. Then divide the square footage by 100 to get the number of cubic yards required.
What is this yellow stuff in my mulch?
This is a very common Yellow Slime Mold. It is not dangerous, though it may not be attractive. When the mulch traps moisture in the soil, it encourages the growth of this mold. If you want to remove it, pick the entire piece up, being careful not to break it apart. This might release the spores into the air, starting the life cycle of the slime mold again. Dispose of it in a plastic bag, to prevent the spores from spreading further.
What product should I use when starting or building up a plant bed?
Our Landscape Soil is perfect for starting beds. It is a rich blend of 50% compost and 50% topsoil (sand, silt, clay-considered a sandy loam blend). The compost is made from food grade production residuals. One cubic yard of soil covers 100 square feet at a 2 inch depth.
Mulch gives your lawn a clean finished look, but did you know that mulch is very beneficial to your plants and soil. Here are a few good reasons to mulch:
- Reduce surface evaporation from the soil
- Improve water penetration and air movement
- Moderate soil temperature fluctuations
- Protect shallow-root plants from freeze damage and frost-heave
- Discourage weed growth
- Improve soil structure and nutrient availability as they decompose
Tree and Shrub Health:
There are many reasons to mulch trees and shrubs in your landscape. The area surrounding your home is very different from the environment that a tree or shrub naturally grows in. In its natural environment trees and shrubs gain nutrients from decomposing plant material that has fallen to the ground or from plants which have died.
In a landscaped area most of this dead or dying plant material has been removed and the surrounding plant material is usually in the form of grass which compete with the trees and shrubs for nutrients. Mulching around the base of the trees in your lawn area boosts the health of trees and shrubs significantly.
Decorative Plant Health:
Use of mulch around your plants is necessary for proper insulation during the extremes of weather. A good layer of mulch applied to your landscape will reduce soil erosion during heavy rainfall. It will also aid your plants during seasonal weather, retaining moisture in the soil during summer heat and insulating roots against winter freeze.
When should you mulch?
Generally, applying mulch can be done anytime during the year, most commonly in the Spring and Fall.
How should you mulch?
Mulch areas should be cleared of all weeds, leaves, and grass. A mulch layer of 3 inches is recommended for a good effective covering. Most all wood and bark mulch materials provide approximately the same level of service, and the choice between materials is based more on appearance and cost. Be sure to see our selection of mulch materials, colors, and sizes illustrated elsewhere in this web site.