Mulch is one of the easiest and most affordable ways to save water while also keeping your garden and pot plants thriving.
When it comes to mulch, our absolute favourite is the Blooming Amazing soil conditioning mulch – read more about it on the Blooming Amazing website.
What is mulch?
Mulch is a layer of material that is placed on the surface around plants to enrich and insulate the soil. There are two main types of mulch:
- Organic mulch is derived from plant or animal matter and is considered most beneficial. Some examples of organic mulch include compost, mushroom compost, pine needles, grass clippings, bark chips and leaves. Mulch improves soil fertility as it slowly breaks down so use partially decomposed organic mulch (compost) to enrich soil and encourage plant growth. If you’re looking to control weeds, use fresh organic mulch like wood chips and bark.
- Inorganic mulch doesn’t decompose but instead acts as a physical barrier to retain soil moisture. For example, stones stabilise areas prone to washouts, and sheeting is ideal around foundation plantings.
Why should you mulch?
Mulching is an essential step in gardening because it comes with a range of benefits:
- Helps soil retain moisture, which encourages good root growth and means less-frequent watering is required
- Lowers soil temperature, meaning less surface evaporation by the sun
- Keeps the roots of plants cool in hot weather
- Helps prevent frost damage in cold weather
- Prevents soil erosion and conditions soil texture
- Plays a role in preventing weed growth
- Attracts beneficial microorganisms and earthworms that aerate soil if organic mulch is used – this mulch also feeds and enriches soil
How to mulch
- Loosen soil to improve ventilation
- Sandy soil requires a thicker layer of mulch than clay soil
- Areas that have a fairly high summer temperature need a thicker layer of mulch
- Leave a space between the mulch and the stem and trunks of trees and shrubs
- Do not place mulch over seeds that have not germinated – they require light and oxygen to sprout
Keep mulching to keep your plants happy and thriving!