What Is Mulch and Why Use Mulch In Garden?

Last Updated on April 20, 2022 by Kimberly Crawford

Increasing productivity and reaping good fruits is the objective of all people who plant, whether a large producer or someone who cultivates only for their consumption, isn’t it? And in this sense, several measures can improve performance in the garden and the garden. An example of this is the use of mulch.

This method brings more protection and productivity to the plants and does not need much maintenance and investment to deliver good results. If you are new to mulch in a garden, check out this article explaining how many bags of mulch are in a yard.

What Is Mulch

bark mulch

Mulch is a layer of material placed over the land to contribute to improving soil, productivity, and crop quality. It can be inorganic or organic. See the difference between the two types:

Organic Mulch

organic mulch

Organic mulch comprises ree leaves, wood chips, sawdust, rice husks, and dry grass. This type of coating breaks down more easily, even at different speeds. Therefore, reapplication must be done frequently. Organic mulch provides nutrients for both the plant and the soil.

Inorganic Mulch

Inorganic mulch is formed by elements such as stones, expanded clay, fabrics, and rubbers. This material does not decompose as quickly as organic mulch, so maintenance work with reapplication is less. Despite this advantage, materials such as these do not provide nutrients for the plant and do not improve the structure of the soil.

Most growers prefer organic mulch as, in addition to the benefits common to both types of mulch, it also can improve the soil and provide nutrients for plants. However, this choice must consider the soil analysis, the type of crop, and other characteristics. Therefore, consult a specialist before using this technique.

The Benefits Of Mulch

benefits of mulch

The use of mulch in the vegetables and garden can benefit both the soil and cultivated plants. The main advantage is that with the cover, whether inorganic or organic, the ground remains moist for longer since the materials are used to retain the liquid. This feature is essential in summer when the soil dries out more quickly.

Watering can be done less frequently, as the mulch keeps the ground moist for longer. In winter, this protective layer also helps to reduce the effects of low temperatures. Another benefit is protection against pests and invasive plants. Mulching helps to inhibit fungally and insect infestation and controls weed germination and growth, making the plant grow healthier.

In addition, the soil can also gain more fertility as it receives nutrients as the organic material decomposes. Finally, the cover even provides an aesthetic gain for the vegetable garden or garden, as the appearance of the space becomes uniform and looks well cared for.

Precautions When Using Mulch

precaution of using mulch

As we have seen, mulch offers benefits to the crop, but it must be used carefully not to end up promoting the opposite effect.

The layer should be between five and ten centimeters thick for trees and other larger plants. However, it is necessary to pay attention to each species not to suffocate the plant with the cover. When it comes to a newly sown area, it is more recommended to use light material, such as sawdust, and with a thin thickness to not impede the growth of the plants.

In the case of trees, it is essential not to exaggerate the thickness of the layer, as this condition can attract rodents to the site. In addition, care must be taken with materials that can undergo acetic fermentation, such as hays. The mulch can release odors and even harm younger plants when this occurs.

Still, on the trees, it is necessary to keep a small distance between the layer and the stem to avoid diseases from excessive moisture at the base of the trunk. It is also critical to apply mulch in the shade of the tree canopy to reach the roots, which, in many species, grow well beyond the area near the stem.

As mulching helps keep the soil moist in places where the soil is already damp, this method is not recommended, as it can leave the ground soggy. In this case, there is a risk of root rot and fungal infestation.

It is worth remembering that it is essential to reapply the coverage as the materials decompose. Thus, you guarantee good results for your vegetable garden on an ongoing basis.


What happens if you don’t mulch?

If you don’t mulch, your garden will be more susceptible to weeds, and your soil will be more likely to erode. Mulching also helps to conserve moisture in the soil, so if you don’t mulch, your plants will need to be watered more frequently.

In addition, mulching can help to moderate soil temperatures, so if you don’t mulch, your soil may be subject to extreme temperature swings that can harm your plants.

Should mulch touch plants?

Mulch is a material, usually organic, that is spread over the surface of the soil. It helps to protect the soil from erosion, retain moisture, and keep weed seeds from germinating. Some people believe that mulch should not touch the stems or leaves of plants because it may cause them to rot.

However, there is no scientific evidence to support this claim. In fact, mulch can actually help to insulate plants and protect them from extreme temperatures. So, if you’re wondering whether or not mulch should touch your plants, the answer is probably yes!

Should I put mulch around my garden?

The answer may depend on what type of mulch you use and why you want to use it. Some types of mulch can help prevent weeds, while others can add nutrients to the soil. You should also consider how easy the mulch is to apply and remove. If you’re not sure whether or not you should put mulch around your garden, talk to a gardening expert for advice.

Does mulch prevent plants from growing?

Mulch is a material, typically organic, that is spread over the surface of soil. Its purpose is to conserve moisture in the soil, suppress weed growth, and keep the ground cooler in summer and warmer in winter. Some types of mulch can also improve the fertility of the soil.

Mulching around plants can help to prevent them from growing, as it smothers the plants and prevents them from getting the light and air they need to grow. However, mulch can also protect plants from extremes of temperature and helps to conserve moisture in the soil, so it is important to use the right type of mulch for your particular needs.

In general, it is best to avoid using mulch around young plants, as they are more likely to be damaged by it. Once plants are established, however, mulch can be a valuable tool in preventing them from growing.