Did you know scientific research shows plants support mental health, boost immunity and, improve air quality? In your yard, you may reap the magical benefits of these plants, trees, flowers, and much more. And while greenery can be beautiful, it can also be a hassle to care for.
That’s why you need a simple and efficient yard management technique. Putting mulch in your yard is the ultimate way to take care of your plants and maintain your yard.
But what exactly is mulch? And what are the benefits you should know? Read on to learn the 15 essential reasons why mulch will become your garden’s secret weapon.
What Is Mulch?
Before we get into the benefits of using mulch in your yard, you need to know a little more information about this material. Mulch is a covering laid over the soil. Mulch can be organic like a compost material or it can include chemicals and engineered ingredients to encourage plant growth and health.
Most typical and organic mulch include items like leaves, straw, grass, pieces of tree bark, or shaved wood. Mulch is a prized garden resource because of its efficiency, relatively low cost, and organic elements.
You may have purchased a bag of mulch but don’t really understand the value add. So, why use mulch in your yard? Let’s dive in!
1. Plants Need Vitamins and Nutrients
Do you remember learning the photosynthesis process in school? That happens when plants convert light into energy. Plants can only capture light and live healthily when they get vitamins and nutrients.
Mulch helps create a layer in which plants can absorb nutrients and vitamins from the soil without strain or stress. In turn, those elements travel up the plant’s stems or tree trunks and help distribute the nutrients upward to branches, leaves, and flowers. Mulch can help prevent plant vitamin loss.
2. Mulch Saves Money
Plant care can be expensive. From costly fertilizers to weekly landscaping visits, you may not have the budget to maintain your yard. But, mulch can fix that and eliminate any economical stressors.
Mulch is extremely affordable. You can find the material in bulk bags at your local garden store or home improvement chain. And a big bag goes a long way.
Instead of spending extra money on new landscaping patterns or filling in areas with costly gravel or other materials, use mulch. Mulch is an organic, attractive, and cost-efficient material that can transform your yard and garden.
3. A Design Alternative
Stone, brick, or concrete are attractive yard design options. But, mulch is an equally chic design alternative. In the yard, trying sectioning offer certain plant or garden areas for mulch.
For example, you can create circular planting areas with mulch. Or use mulch to fill barren or forgotten spots in your yard. Mulch can help you achieve a country-chic or shabby-chic garden vibe.
4. Limit Weed Growth
Weeds are a nuisance that can also wreak havoc on your garden. Some aggressive weeds could kill your prized plants or expensive flowers. And, weeding can be time-consuming and tiring.
Limit weed growth by using mulch. Mulch acts as a natural deterrent and barrier to weeds. That’s because the layering effect of mulch keeps weeds at bay; discouraging these pesty vines to attack your existing plants or break through the surface.
Just as plants need vitamins and nutrients, they also require moisture to live and stay healthy. It can be time-consuming, costly, and tiresome to water plants every day. Mulch can help!
The material is great for maintaining and retaining moisture. This is especially important during the hot summer months when the sun can damage plants. Mulch helps to keep water below the surface and near the plant’s roots.
6. Better for Soil Drainage
Have you ever noticed most pots have a few holes on the bottom? This allows for water drainage and the roots to breathe. Without proper drainage, plants could drown and die.
This can affect your garden investment and overall yard aesthetic. As mulch decomposes and blends into the soil layer beneath, water can trickle down into the plant roots without pooling.
7. Cushions and Supports Plant Growth
Some plants in your yard may require extra cushioning or support. This is especially true at the beginning of the season when you may have just planted fresh flowers or delicate vegetable rows. Mulch acts as a barrier and support to keep these young plants or seeds firmly in the ground.
Why put mulch in your yard? This is an easy opportunity to start living a more green-friendly lifestyle.
Mulch is an organic mixture of natural materials. Here are just some examples of green-friendly items you may find in a bag of mulch:
- Pine needles
Contrarily, inorganic mulch can include unnatural materials like plastic or other compounds used to bind. If you want a green and more natural alternative look for the organic seal on the outside of the mulch bag. Or, communicate this preference to your gardener.
Your Yard Will Thrive
When using organic mulch, the yard can benefit from these natural ingredients. That’s because the plants can break down these materials at an easier and higher rate.
Then, they turn those materials into energy and grow healthier and stronger. Introducing organic mulch is a great way to bring green-focused living to the outdoors and change your buying decisions.
9. Creates a Cohesive Look
Are you having trouble designing your yard? Maybe you have a large space with many different areas. Or, perhaps you are starting fresh to create the garden of your dreams.
Mulch can help streamline the design process and create a cohesive look. For example, a stone gravel walkway paired with a concrete deck and a small patch of grass can look like an eyesore. That’s because the materials clash and don’t create a cohesive design story.
Instead, mulch is typically one color. Therefore, you can sprinkle mulch across your largest garden areas. Or, use it as a filler material next to walkways or to cover dry patches.
The same material used in different spaces across your yard helps the space look more intentionally designed. And unlike gravel or other materials that can be heavy and hard to replace, mulch can be repurchased season after season to create the same look.
10. Find It Anywhere
Mulch isn’t a hard-to-find or exclusive material. You can purchase mulch at your local home improvement store or ask your gardener to supply the yard with a preferred amount. That takes the stress out of shopping or maintaining the garden.
11. Easy Installation Process
Gardening can be hard work. Lessen your load by using mulch. All you have to do is select the yard area where you want to layer the mulch.
Check the area for debris and remove weeds. Then be especially cautious of existing plants, trees, or flowers. You want to layer the mulch around the greenery.
Finally, rip open the bag of mulch and sprinkle to coat the ground. Stop when you have an even layer of mulch and covered the existing soil completely.
You May Benefit From Using Tools
This easy installation process saves time prepping and cultivating your soil. But in the case of a bigger yard or project, check out these attachments for easier mulching.
12. Regulates Soil Temperature
Mulch acts as a barrier protecting the soil and yard from overexposure to sun or other harsh weather conditions. For example, on a hot summer day, mulch can absorb the sun’s heat which helps the plant retain moisture from the soil and not overheat.
13. Saves Water
With the US headed toward water shortages, it is crucial to preserve this precious resource. Mulch helps to save water.
With mulch, you won’t have to water your plants or yard as frequently. This in turn can save you time and money all while supporting a healthier planet.
14. Keep Plants Safe in Cold Temperatures
In the harsh winter months, mulch can act as a barrier to protect deeply grounded roots against frostbite or other damages. This can help protect the health of your garden and prepare your yard for the next season.
15. Encourages Natural Organisms
Pests like earthworms and some insects may be unsightly. But they are essential organisms that help keep the yard healthy. That’s because creatures like earthworms help to eliminate plant debris.
These creatures can live comfortably in and around mulch because it is a nutrient-dense and fibrous layer. Therefore, mulch encourages these creatures to get closer to plants and help support the growth process.
Mulch Can Help Improve Yard Quality
Are you ready to start using mulch in your yard? These benefits show the diverse, interesting, and essential reasons why your yard needs mulch to thrive. This affordable and easily accessible material can help keep your garden healthy and encourage plants to sprout near after year.
Mulch requires virtually no maintenance and is typically organic. So, this allows you to easily and efficiently care for your yard while helping the environment.
Save money, time, and resources by using mulch in your yard and garden care routine. If you found this information helpful, check out our other garden stories.