Benefits of Mulched Gardening Products
Have you ever been to a beautiful garden and wondered what the beautiful looking top layers are? Well, those are nothing but differently colored, multipurpose bark mulch that enhances a garden’s appeal and offers many other benefits. Mulched products are available in different colors, textures and types, as well as may be organic or inorganic.
- Professional product installers make a garden look neat and tidy. It also enhances plants’ growing conditions by enhancing soil texture, moderating soil temperature, conserving water and suppressing weeds.
- Organic mulches (rather than inorganic materials such as volcanic rock, shell, gravel, granite screening and limestone) make the best soil coverings. Organic mulches in cities usually come from tree trimming and utility-line clearing and as by-products of forest harvesting. Common mulches include leaf mold, pine straw and cocoa bean hulls. Mulch trees include cypresses, northern hardwood, southern pines and eucalyptus. While manure, mushroom compost and grass clippings are also used as a topping, they decompose easily making them ineffective in soil temperature control and moisture retention. Hardwood mulches release alkaline substances into the soil as it decomposes.Hence, they are favorable for plants that are alkaline-loving. Similarly, acid-releasing mulch such as pine bark, pine straw and true cypress are the best for acid-loving plants such as rhododendrons and azaleas.
- Mulches also add texture to a landscape, thus enhancing its appearance. It also insulates and regulates soil temperature. Mulched products absorb the ultraviolet rays of the sun to convert them into less powerful, long-wave rays. It also slows down heat transfer into the soil in the summers. In the fall season, the soil also loses heat slowly. Slow heat loss or warmer winter soil temperature results in less root loss due to freezing.
- Mulch retains soil moisture by reducing evaporation and helping rainfall absorption. It also reduces the potential for soil erosion, as direct contact with rainfall is eliminated.
While certain products make their claims as to the benefits they offer, there are some points to be careful about on mulched soil. These inferior products typically cause issues like improper drainage which can lead to larger problems down the road.