Mulching your garden sounds simple, and generally, it is. But, if you do it incorrectly you may not get the full benefits that mulch can bestow on your garden!
Mulch can help the soil conserve water, improve its quality, protect the roots from extreme temperatures, and slow down the growth of weeds. But it also looks great and adds color and texture to the flower beds and other points of interest in your garden.
Let’s take a look at how to spread mulch properly and make sure your garden gets the full benefits of that lovely mulch.
How To Lay Mulch
1. Prepare the area
If you are mulching for weed control, pull the weeds from the area and enrich the soil as you are turning it over. Also, remove the dead leaves and trimmings.
To prevent it from spilling onto the walkways, you need a 2-3-inch trench or some garden edging around the lawn perimeter.
Remove any larger sticks or debris to ensure you get a smooth finish to your mulch.
If you arent sure how much mulch you need, here is a mulch calculator you can use.
2. Get Ready For Delivery
Depending on the size of the area to be mulched, you may be getting quite a large delivery of mulch to your property.
Ensure you have picked an area for the delivery to be dumped – make sure it is accessible easily by the truck.
If you are dumping the mulch onto your lawn, place a tarpaulin for the mulch to be dumped on to ensure easy clean up.
3. Edge Your Garden
This is a whole topic in itself, but the importance of clearly marking the edges of your garden cannot be understated.
Edging your garden before mulching gives you a clear spot to finish spreading your mulch and to ensure it doesnt spread onto areas it shouldn’t.
Edging can be as simple as digging a small trench that is 3-4 inches wide and about 2 inches deep around the area, or you may decide to actually install some physical garden edging.
4. Lay The Mulch
- Load your mulch into a wheelbarrow with a pitchfork. If you haven’t got a pitchfork then a shovel or spade will be fine.
- Dump the mulch in small piles around the area you want it spread.
- Use a steel tine rake to spread the mulch evenly. Spread towards the other piles you have placed down. You should spread the mulch to a depth of about 2-4 inches.
- Spread towards trees and bushes, but leave an inch or so gap from the actual trunk of the plant. This avoids problems with disease, rot, and insects.
- Continue this until your area is completely mulched.
- Clean up any that has gone over the edging with a leaf blower.