Mulch Basics

To ensure the well being of your trees and plants, follow these practical mulching suggestions to landscape like the pros:

  • For well-drained sites, apply a two to four inch layer of mulch. If drainage issues exist, use a thinner layer.
  • If mulch is currently present, verify the depth. Don't add mulch if there's currently a adequate layer (two to four inches) in place. Instead, rake the old mulch to break up any matted layers and refresh the look.
  • Avoid placing mulch against the tree trunks.
  • If mulch is currently piled against the stems or tree trunks, pull it back a number of inches to ensure that the base of the trunk and also the root crown are exposed.
  • Mulch out towards the tree’s drip line or beyond if possible.

Most generally accessible mulches function nicely in most landscapes. Be mindful from the reality that some plants might benefit from the use of a slightly acidifying mulch like pine bark.

Organic mulches are preferable for their soil-enhancing properties. Make sure it's nicely aerated and composted to avoid sour-smelling mulch.

Avoid using uncomposted wood chips which have been piled deeply with out exposure to oxygen. Use composted wood chips instead, particularly once they include a blend of leaves, bark, and wood.