Mulch is any material, organic or inorganic, that is placed on top of the soil in a garden or landscape. Mulch is a gardener’s most important tool and an essential component of low-maintenance landscapes. It has many benefits in gardening and landscape related hobbies, mulching retains moisture in the soil, suppresses weeds, keeps the soil cool and makes the garden bed look more appealing. Mulches help improve the soil’s fertility as it decomposes.
Benefits of Mulch
Mulches offer many benefits to your soil and plants apart from being just pretty. Mulch reduces the amount of water evaporation by protecting soil from the sun’s rays. It keeps the soil cooler during the summer and acts as an insulator through the cold winter months; This rids the negative effects of extreme high and low temperatures on plant roots. Organic matter is added to the soil as the mulch breaks down. Increasing the soils organic matter will improve it’s moisture and its ability to hold nutrients, it’s structure, and drainage. It also encourages the activity of healthy organisms, while halting weed growth and the spread of some plant diseases. Mulched plots are also less prone to erosion.
Organic Versus Inorganic
Mulch instantly gives your landscape a beautiful, finished appearance but the benefits of mulches go far beyond elevating the look or value of your home or business, especially when you choose a natural-based mulch over one made of rubber or gravel. using the appropriate landscaping supplies can positively boost both your garden health and appearance. This can mean providing better water retention to preventing harmful insects.
These types of mulches are made from natural materials like wood chips, straws and pine barks that decompose over time. As these mulches decompose, they add nutrients and organic matter to the soil and beneficial microorganisms. Beneficial bacteria and fungi are enhanced while bad pathogens — those that cause plant disease are prevented. Increased amounts of organic matter will improve the physical health and drainage, increase moisture retention, reduce soil compaction, and attract earthworms. Because organic mulches decompose, they need to be replaced. Depending on the type of mulch used, replacement intervals vary from one to four years. Perth landscaping supplies can be delivered to all Perth suburbs with many options that will work for all kinds of gardens.
Inorganic mulches include stones, geotextile mats and landscape fabrics, and plastic mulches. These types of fabrics and plastic mulches deteriorate with time and will require a fresh batch. Inorganic mulches usually take more effort to install and may require irrigation because water penetration may be limited. Some inorganic mulches are designed to reflect the sky to confuse and keep insects from landing on plants. Many do not have a very natural look and are often covered by an organic mulch for decorative purposes.