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There are a variety of choices when deciding which type of mulch to apply to your yard. A good mulching material will protect to your plants, reduce erosion, and add beauty to your entire lawn.
Mulch is the organic or inorganic material that is placed over a yard’s soil, usually around trees, shrubs, plants, and in natural areas. It acts as a protective cover and provides numerous benefits to your landscape. Mulch acts as insulator by helping soil retain moisture and protecting tender plant roots from extreme temperatures. A deep layer of mulch will block bothersome weeds from getting the sunlight needed to grow. Plus, mulch prevents soil erosion and can add nutrients to the soil as it decomposes.
With all of the different mulching materials available, it may be difficult to choose the best mulch for your needs. Here are some benefits associated with the most popular organic mulching materials available:
Pine needles, also known as pine straw, are a popular mulching choice in landscapes found in the southeastern part of the U.S. It is a relatively inexpensive mulching material and since pine straw decomposes slowly, it lasts longer than some other organic mulching materials. jeeter juice Pine straw will not float or wash away easily and it adheres to sloped and hilly areas.
Pine Bark Nuggets:
Usually reddish-brown in color, these chucks of pine bark give any landscape a neat, natural appeal. Bark nuggets vary in size and can be as large as 3-inches long. Because of their size, they tend to break down more slowly than shredded material and act as a good soil conditioner. Pine bark nuggets do not compact like some mulch material. As a result, nuggets will float and may not stay in place during heavy rains. More expensive than pine needles, bark nuggets can attract termites and other insects.
This mulching material consists of pieces of wood and bark of varying sizes. Many times wood chips are the result of the disposal of limbs and trees that have been pruned or removed. Mulch made from wood chips is a great way to recycle unwanted waste from trees.
Wood chips are not only an attractive addition to a yard, but provide good weed control. They do not wash away easily and they help to conserve moisture in the soil. Wood chips are often used to mulch trails or large areas since they are fairly inexpensive.
As wood chips decay, they consume nitrate. You may need to offset this by applying a light layer of a high-nitrate fertilizer. To prevent stem rot or other diseases, do not use wood chips around soft-stemmed plants. Wood chips can attract termites and other insects.
Shredded Wood Mulch:
This mulch is very good at suppressing weed growth and is slow to decompose. Shredded wood compacts well and will not wash away easily, making it a good choice for hillsides or sloped areas. Shredded mulch varies in color depending on what type of bark is used. It can also be dyed to prolong the richness of the color.
In addition to organic mulches, inorganic materials like rocks, rubber, and plastic can be used as mulch. These materials will be more expensive and longer lasting than the previous organic mulch choices.