The benefits of fall mulching
Did you know one simple act this fall you could conserve water next summer, improve your overall soil health, build healthy plant roots, and reduce the amount of fertilizer wasted in the soil? The very task of fall mulching is the solution to all the benefits listed. Mulch comes in various forms, organic and inorganic. Organic mulch us composed of spent living material such as bark, straw, leaves, grass clippings, and pine needles. These organic mulch choices improve the soil by adding nutrients as they decompose and encourage earthworm activity.
Mulching involves layering the mulch on top of your flower beds and gardens or raking it into your lawn. By spreading mulch this fall, the winter rains will take the nutrients from the decomposing mulch and distribute them into the soil. Your plants and grasses will thrive! Mulch also helps keep the soil warm, encouraging roots to continue growing through the cold months. When spring arrives, the strong roots can take full advantage of spring growth and will require less watering. Mulching will adjust the soil temperatures in the summer by keeping the soil cooler and balance the temperature swings.
The benefits of mulching extend even further to your outdoor spaces.
- Improves the aesthetic of your outdoor spaces.
- Controls weed growth by blocking the sunlight necessary for germination.
- Retains water by slowing evaporation.
- Deters insect infestation.
- Assists with erosion control.
Break it down
If you are using organic material like corn cobs, leaves, or brush, your organic mulch will be more effective if is broken down into small pieces. Shredding is the easiest way to achieve this. Another option is to push a lawn mower over the leaves a few times. After removing remaining plants and debris from your beds and lawn. Spread mulch and rake it out to a layer of three to five inches. Weigh the mulch down with a little compost sprinkled over the top.
Mulching is just one of the few simple steps you can take during the fall months giving you a head start next year. Also provides more time to enjoy your healthy landscape. Let the “Mulch Madness” begin!