The best mulch to prevent weeds will depend on a few different things, like what kind of garden it’s being placed in and the location. There are many different types of mulch and there’s one that will be perfect for your gardening needs.
Mulch is a must for a healthy, productive garden. The main objective of mulch is to prevent weed but it will benefit the garden in other ways too.
What Is Mulch?
Mulch is any type of organic or non-organic material used to cover the soil in a garden. It can be decorative, like wood bark that has been dyed red or black, and used to prevent weeds and add more color to the garden. It can be non-organic recycled materials, like carpet scraps or roofing shingles.
The primary function of mulch is to prevent weeds from growing in the garden. Weeds compete with food and flower plants for water and nutrients. The weeds typically grow faster than the plants you have planted and will choke them out.
A thick layer of mulch placed on top of the soil in your garden will prevent the weeds from growing. Mulch is not only used around garden plants but on any landscape area where you don’t want weeds to grow.
Other Benefits Of Mulch
As the mulch works to prevent weeds seeds from germinating and growing, it also provides several other benefits to the soil.
- It keeps the soil cooler during the summer so plant roots are less stressed by the heat.
- It helps the soil retain moisture so plants won’t dehydrate.
- Organic mulch will slowly decompose and become part of the soil. Organic matter improves soil fertility and structure.
- Mulch helps prevent soil erosion and compaction.
- Rough mulch is organic pest control. Creeping, crawling, and slithering garden pests stay away from mulch that has rough, sharp edges that would cut their undersides and kill them.
Types Of Mulch
- Hay or straw is a common type of organic mulch. Organic mulch will add to the soil, non-organic will not.
- Tree bark (dyed or natural) and shredded bits of trees and shrubs. These are considered to be rough mulch and are great to use in an organic garden.
- Shredded newspaper or cardboard
- Nut hulls
- Tree leaves and grass clippings are free and readily available
- Non-organic mulch includes small pieces of rubber, landscape fabric, stones, and gravel. Non-organic mulch will not need replacing as often as organic mulch items.