When spring comes around one of the most annoying things to deal with in the yard is the growth of weeds. Weeds can be obnoxious to the point home owners may resort to environmentally dangerous chemicals in order to kill them.
One of the ways to prevent weeds from growing out of control is mulching, a process which has other benefits for your yard and garden. When you mulch you put down a layer of organic material over soil blocking the path of weed root systems that would normally have great ease moving wherever they want. At the same time mulch helps soil retain moisture and in doing so keeps good plant roots strong, healthy, and cool in the heat.
Sometimes a few weeds will get through so there could very well be some maintenance but it shouldnt be anywhere as much as youve experienced in the past.
Now in order to mulch its good to know a few things about the different kinds of organic mulch out there. Some break down easier than other thus feeding nutrients into the soil. However, those kinds of mulches need to be replaced more often.
An example of longer lasting mulch is pine bark wood chips or nuggets. An example of a less durable mulch, i.e. that it will need replacing more often, is grass clippings or leaves.
Weather can be a factor in the choice of mulch because youll want to make sure whatever you put down wont wash away in a downpour or that it will stay in place during high winds.
Where to get mulch: Mulch can either be store bought or found using the resources around you. Grass clippings, leaves, pine needles, and the like are generally available in residential areas. General hardware stores usually sell the heavier kinds but check if it was treated with chemicals, which could affect other plants in your yard.
When to mulch: When you do decide which mulch to go with heres what you need to know regarding layering it on the ground:
1.Clear any existing weeds from the area to be mulched
2.You can layer newspaper down across the area but leave room around existing flowers, bushes and trees. Leave areas where perennials are supposed to pop up open. The newspaper will help the mulch and its biodegradable so it will eventually disappear itself.
3.Spread mulch over the newspaper covering 2 - 4 inches thick. Less than 2 inches will let enough light through to the soil that any vegetation you are trying to prevent will reappear gloriously.