Top Five Natural Mulch Ideas for Your Garden

natural mulch ideas

Applying organic mulch to soil boosts its fertility which in turn enables plants to grow to their full potential. Additionally, mulching helps improve the soil’s constitution by restoring nutrients, keeps out pests and weeds, and insulates roots and soil in winter.

Proper mulching ensures you spend more time focussing on how to improve yields and less time watering and weeding.

Compost

Compost can be very effective in boosting soil’s fertility, eventually promoting healthy growth of plants and shrubs. When it comes to using compost as mulch, you can either purchase it from a gardening store or prepare it yourself.

When making your own compost, ensure that you have sufficiently composted it to completely do away with weeds or pests.

Compost can be made out of plant debris like dead leaves and stems, kitchen scraps, and so on. Adding worm castings and animal manure will go a long way in enriching the homemade compost. However, make sure the compost stays moist once you have spread it thinly over the topsoil.

You can keep the compost layer humid by topping it with another dense layer of mulch like chopped leaves or grass clippings.

Leaf Mould

Collect all fallen leaves in a bag. Use a lawn mower to shred the leaves, and cover the earth with a layer of shredded leaves. Leaf mulch and leaf mould tend to decompose pretty rapidly, which means they can reinstate a copious amount of nutrients to soil.

Hay or Straw

Weed-free hay, salt hay and straw can serve as excellent mulch for your vegetable garden or orchard. Stray or hay, like most other quality mulches, can replenish organic matter to earth; keep weeds at bay, and preserve soil moisture.

Cocoa Chips

Cocoa bean shells are lightweight and versatile, making them easier to deal with and their invigorating aroma ensure that your garden keeps smelling good. Since cocoa chips are expensive and rot fairly quickly, applying a 1-inch layer once in a year may suffice.

Grass Cuttings

You can have a ready stock of organic mulch throughout the year by cutting the unwieldy grass in your garden. Spread the glass clippings thinly across soil beds, and then turn over or till the soil when the growing season ends.

Conclusion

There are two rules of thumb you need to keep in mind when it comes to mulching garden soil. For a start, always uproot weeds and get rid of common garden pests before mixing mulch with the soil. Thereafter, envelop the earth with a 5- to 6-inch layer of compost to check the growth of new weeds and discourage pests from infesting the soil.

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