To Mulch in the Autumn

Mulch is important in the fall, too.

By FamilyTime

 All gardens benefit from mulch. Chances are you mulched in the spring, but it's time to do so again to get the garden ready to face the cooler months to come.

If you are a beginner, you might not realize the value of mulch. If you are an old hand, you probably are already ordering your fall mulch.

Why Mulch?

Most mulch is a biodegradable mixture sold in large sacks or “by the yard” whose purpose is to cover the earth, hold in moisture, enrich the soil, and keep weeds under control. After the garden is planted, wise gardeners spread a good, deep layer of mulch between the plants and around the edges of the beds.

This same mulch keeps the garden safe during the winter.

Plan to spread several thick inches of mulch on all your garden beds. Build it up around the base of shrubbery, rose bushes and any recently planted trees.

A good layer will decompose and eventually turn into top soil. Your garden will be in better shape for it come spring, when you will have to start mulching all over again!

What Kind of Mulch
Most gardeners prefer organic mulches made from degradable materials. They come in a variety of hues, from rusty red to deep, chocolate brown.

Mulch can be made from chopped or chunked pine bark, cedar, other hardwoods and even cocoa hulls and pecan shells. Some gardeners prefer finely chopped mulch that almost resembles dirt, while others like larger chunks. The choice is one of preference; both do a good job.

Inorganic mulch includes materials such as pebbles, crushed stone, gravel, and black plastic. The stones are useful in gardens with a lot of foot traffic or where the homeowner prefers a low-maintenance yard with little lawn. Black plastic is a good choice for utilitarian vegetable gardens and similar plots where you are more interested in function than style.

Once you become a mulcher, you will be convinced. And your garden will be healthier, more attractive, and easier to care for.