Bad Mulching!!!

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Bad Mulching!!!Mulching, mulching, mulching. It seems to be the only thing gardeners are talking about these days. And why not? With the warmer temperatures and shorter schedules, who has time to weed and water their landscaping 24/7? Mulching is a great way to keep the soil cool and moist while also banning pesky weeds from your garden.

But mulching isn’t necessarily so cut and dry as most people think. There are a few mistakes you should avoid if you want to get it right.

Crowding the Trees: Mulching is great for trees but you’ve got to do it right if you want to get the benefits it offers. Many people crowd their trees with mulch by piling it high and onto the trunk of the tree. Bad mulching! Mulching a tree should not resemble a turtle neck sweater, but a crew neck tee.

If you carry the mulch too high, the moisture it traps will cause rot and mold within the trunk of the tree. This stunts the health and growth of the tree.

A crew neck approach would leave the mulch a few inches away from the trunk itself and extend 3-4 inches away from the tree. Three inches is also a great depth to keep when mulching.

Use the same basic principle with shrubs and you’re in good shape.

Using Random Thickness:
The thickness of the mulch you use should be appropriate to the growth you mulch. Some gardeners use the same material to mulch ants as they use when mulching trees. Bad mulching!

Use thicker material to mulch larger plants and thinner material when mulching smaller ones. Perennials can probably stand a bit thicker material but check the tolerance of the species of planting you’re working with and choose a mulch accordingly.

Color Matters:
Lots of gardening is aesthetically-driven. Mulching is no different. Color in landscaping is everything. One of the biggest mistakes in a garden mulch selection is its color.

Every landscape is different, of course. But as a general rule of thumb. The closer your mulch color is to earth tones, the better. Mulch should be the backdrop, not the focal point. Bright colored mulch material pulls the eye away from the real stars of the show, your plantings. If you have flowers and colorful plants, get creative with those, not the mulch. Otherwise, there will be too much going on and your eyes won’t know what to look at.

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