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Why Mulch Your Garden?

While mulching your garden, understanding your dirt and its needs is the way to planting achievement. Soil goes about as a stay for plant roots and holds air, water and plant supplements which are basic for proceeded with plant development. Mulching your garden traps significant dampness in your dirt enhancing the availablity take-up of supplements and furthermore anticipating weed development.

Why Do you Mulch Soils?

Mulching your dirt is a critical stride for enhancing your dirts structure making them ready to clutch more supplements, dampness and air. You may feel that you are just setting a cover over your dirt, yet infact the mulches are separating and discharging profitable substance into your dirts. So one basic act will enhance your dirt, keeps weeds under control and make your quaint little inns look far superior.

Why Do Soils Need Improving?

Clay soils

Although clay soils hold nutrients well, they are heavy, slow to warm up and tend to be too wet (sticky) in the winter and too dry (rock hard) in the summer. The key to improving these soils is to break up the mass, and increase aeration and drainage by adding composted soil conditioner to achieve a crumb-like texture.

Silty soils

Silt particles are extremely fine and tend to rise to the soil surface forming a water-resistant crust when dry. Adding soil improver will help with the structure and allow water to penetrate.

Sandy soils

These are very light, easily eroded, dry and lack substance and the ability to hold water or nutrients. Soil improvers help to retain moisture and nutrients before they leach away.

Regular mulching will help improve all these soil types and give you much stronger, healthier plants – with the added benefit of reducing weed growth!

What is Mulching?

Mulching your garden is adding a thick layer of organic matter (usually manure, compost or bark) on the surface, this will help to retain soil moisture, suppress weeds, add nutrients and insulate plant roots. The best garden mulch should be attractive too. Try decorative bark or woodchip mulch. Each will provide an attractive surface that adds a decorative and useful finish to flower beds, around the base of trees and along the edges of paths. Make sure you water the ground thoroughly before you add your layer of mulch, you need to trap the moisture in the soil so make sure there is moisture there first!

Different Types of Mulch

There are many different organic mulches available, the best ones will form a dense mat holding in water and gradually breaking down releasing nutrients into the soil. Well rotted Farmyard Manure is often used and is great for keeping weeds off empty beds that are resting over winter, waiting for their spring planting.  When you are ready to plant simply dig the manure in and you have a well fertilised, weed free soil to start planting up.

Leaf mulch is used in a similar way and can easily be made at home by having a seperate compost bin just to collect leaves in, the leaves rot down over the year and produce a lovely organic mulch, and it’s free!

Composted bark is another good choice, much less smelly than the manure and generally darker and richer in colour so more pleasing to the eye.

Wood chip mulch is a popular option, it can come in a range of sizes and styles. Pine bark nuggets tend to be viewed as the most attractive of the barks, with the stripped bark similar to the type you see in childrens play areas being the cheapest option.

How to Apply Mulch

  1. Clear the site of all weeds
  2. If the ground is dry, water thoroughly
  3. Cover the area in a layer of your chosen garden mulch
  4. Make sure the area has a mulch depth of at least 2 inches (5cm)
  5. Clear the mulch away from the stems of the plants
  6. Use a plastic rake to gently level the surface