Mulch is a great way to keep your garden looking healthy and beautiful. It keeps the soil moist, reduces weeds, and adds an aesthetic appeal to any outdoor area.

But where should you add mulch? Here we’ve rounded up some of the best places to add mulch in your garden or yard.

Where should mulch be applied?

Mulching around spring bulbs as the foliage dies back will nourish them while also locking in moisture when needed. Mulching also reduces the need for digging, which can easily result in bulb damage.

Under hedges

Aside from regular trimming, hedges are frequently overlooked. Their roots are densely packed and benefit from an annual mulch to keep moisture and feed the plants. Before mulching, make sure the soil is damp or properly watered.

The dark organic mulch around herbaceous perennials — dark organic mulch aesthetically separates herbaceous perennials. If you’ve just divided and watered them, mulching around the new plants will help them get started in the growing season.

Bushes and fruit trees

Bushes and fruit trees require a lot of moisture around their roots, particularly when the fruit is developing. Weeds will be suppressed, and the plants will be healthier and more resistant to pests and diseases if they are mulched regularly.

Other uses for mulch

Mulch can be used for more than just adorning and protecting your plants and trees. Mulch can be used to make paths. You may add a dramatic, useful touch to your landscape by creating a pebble path or filling in around stepping stones with wood mulch.

Mulched areas can be used to create borders around sidewalks, driveways, patios, and pools, separating them from the rest of your landscape.

If you want to reduce the size of your lawn, stone and rubber mulch can be used to replace parts of grass while also boosting the variety of your landscape. More ideas can be found at Lawn Alternatives.

Some varieties of mulch are ideal for use as loose-fill material beneath swing sets and play sets.

Getting the most out of your mulch

Preparing to mulch the garden in spring laying out a row of commercial organic mulch in bags around the edge of the flowerbed on a neatly manicured green lawn

Proper installation and maintenance of your mulch beds will help them last longer. Here are some tips to help you prolong the lifespan of your mulch (even before you start laying it)!

1. Remove weeds

One advantage of putting mulch is that it discourages the growth of new weeds. Remove any weeds and plant growth from your garden beds to improve your mulch’s performance. To ensure that weeds are removed, use a herbicide before spreading mulch.

2. Trim the trees and shrubs

Overhanging trees and surrounding shrubs or bushes can generate debris. Trimming these before mulching will reduce debris.

3. Clear out the beds

You should remove trimmings, dead leaves, or last year’s mulch and uproot any leftover weeds. This creates a blank canvas for your new mulch. Before distributing, make sure any compacted soil is broken up. This can be done quickly and easily with a rake, allowing air and moisture to move freely.

4. Maintain beds every month

It is a good idea to keep loosening mulch once a month because it will begin to compress as it breaks down. Like in the previous phase, breaking up the mulch on top allows more air and moisture to reach the plant’s roots. It also inhibits fungal growth and can improve the appearance of your mulch beds.

Mulching Tips and Tricks

Mulch is an important part of any landscaping project, and there are a few tips and tricks that can help make the process go smoothly. When applying mulch, it’s important to take into consideration the size and type of mulch that works best for your project.

For example, fine-textured mulches such as pine straw or shredded bark are better suited for flower beds, while coarser materials such as gravel or crushed stone work best around trees and shrubs.

It’s also essential to apply mulch at the right time of year; spring is typically the best time to mulch because it helps protect plants from extreme temperatures. Additionally, when laying down mulch, be sure to keep it at least three inches away from tree trunks, and other plant stems to prevent rot or decay.

Finally, be mindful of the amount of water you’re using when applying mulch; too much can lead to mold growth or soil erosion. Following these tips and tricks will help create a healthy and beautiful landscape for years to come.