There are a lot of people talking about using mulch in gardens these days. People like Ruth Stout and her book No-Work Garden Book: Secrets of the Famous Year-Round Mulch Method and the Back To Eden Gardening Film have brought a lot of recognition to this method of gardening. Here Is what you need to know about using mulch in the garden.
Here Is What We Discuss In The Live Chat:
Why you might want to use mulch in your garden
- Moisture retention – mulch blocks the sun from beating down on the soil and drying out as quickly.
- Weed suppression – a thick layer of mulch prevents weeds from growing.
- Disease control – many disease issues come from the soil, mulch will prevent the soil from splashing on the plant thus helping to prevent disease.
- Soil temperature control – mulch creates an insulation barrier which helps to regulate soil temperatures.
- Prevents soil erosion – because mulch forms a barrier between soil and erosion contributors such as water and rain, soil stays in place.
- Encourages microbial activity in the soil – soil microbes like it dark, warm and moist, the very environment mulch provides.
- Chopped or shredded leaves – preferably older leaves that have slightly composted.
- Grass clippings
- Rotted hay
- Chop and drop of dynamic nutrient accumulators
- Clear, black, or colored plastic
- Polyester garden fabrics
- Gravel or stone
- Carpet remnants
Benefits of living mulch
- All the benefits of other mulches +
- Can add nitrogen to soil
- Improves soil tilth
- Attracts pollinators
- Can compete with crops over nutrients in the soil
- Can compete for water in a dry environment
Some common plants used as living mulch
- plantain (homestead hostas)
- bush beans
I also take a walk around my garden showing you a few of the mulching methods I use.
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