How Much Mulch to Use

What is mulch?

Mulch is a vapor barrier covering soil in landscape beds.  Mulches can be made of organic or inorganic materials. Flower bed mulch can help suppress weeds, maintain soil temperature levels, and provide a decorative touch to the bed.

How Much Mulch to Use?

Suppliers recommend from 1 to 3 inches of mulch on a highly sloped landscape. A hard rain will wash such material off the slope where sloping occurs.  Proper barriers must be installed to hold the mulch, and heavier materials such as gravels or rocks.

When choosing a mulch, aesthetics is typically the most important concern of a homeowner or landscaper.  A successful water conservation program will educate the final user about proper application of mulch, including maintenance in order to get the greatest water savings. Water savings are related to depth of mulch slope of soil, irrigation system, and proper application. Mulch placed too close to trunks of plants can provide a habitat for pathogens (fungus or molds).

Types of Mulches

Rocks and gravel hold heat more than organic mulches, therefore organic mulch should only be used with heat tolerant plants. Other inorganic mulch products include recycled rubber products. The principle advantage of inorganic mulches is the fact that organic materials decompose. Organic material must be replaced or added to every year.

Organic mulches, such as include shredded bark, leaves, and chipped wood can decay. After rainfall mulches can compact, and if anaerobic spaces develop.  A “sour” mulch with ammonia, or other organic gases can develop which can damage or kill the plants. Mulched beds with organic materials need regular turning to prevent such anaerobic processes. Some types of mulches can hold water better than others. Micro irrigation is recommended, however it is wise to avoid sprinkler irrigation which wets the entire mulched bed.

Mulching is not always easy. Let Prosper Sod’s professional team work your garden and flower bed to perfection.

How Much Mulch to Use

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