Mulching your garden does several wonderful things for the soil and the plants. Reflect for a moment on the natural and nearly untouched environment of a forest floor. The floor is soft, the soil is rich, the trees and plants are generally healthy and beautiful and there are very few weeds. The natural mulch that occurs from leaves, twigs, and other droppings contributes a great deal to this vibrant, healthy environment.
Mulching our gardens allows for similar conditions. It is helping nature do its job in our urban settings. There are many different types of mulch, but they are all made up of various natural ingredients including tree bark, leaves, compost and various other biodegradable. These rich ingredients are a natural slow release fertilizer and soil conditioner. In fact many gardener use mulch, compost, and irrigation alone to fertilizer their gardens and condition their soil.
Mulch is also a natural weed retardant. By adding three to six inches of Mulch to your garden beds twice a year, weeds have less oxygen and sunlight with which to develop. This slows down and sometimes eliminates the production of weeds in your garden without the use of harmful herbicides or chemicals!
Mulch creates a cozy and healthy environment for your plants in other ways too. It protects plants from freezing in cold weather by keeping the soil and roots warm and protected. In the summer it helps hold moisture in the soil, allowing the plants to stay cool and irrigated longer. It may even be a factor in lowering you water usage/water bill. Mulch also assists in beneficial microbial activity which is essential to healthy, vital soil.
Leaves, particularly smaller ones that fall from trees and shrubs around your property are a good source of mulch and help with all the processes described above. Our crews will often remove some but not all of these leaves, trying to find the happy balance of a garden that is healthy, yet well kept.
All in all, mulch gives your garden a health and beauty treatment. If you are not already on one, you might consider getting on a twice yearly mulching program for your gardens to reap the benefits of this wonderful natural product. Let us know if you would like to discuss this fantastic option.