Mulch is an essential step to landscaping and gardens here in Central Florida. Not only does mulch protect your plants from the summer heat, it helps them thrive. The little bit of work it takes, is well worth the effort when you sit back and enjoy the beauty of a health and happy yard.

Choosing the right mulch

For our Florida environment, hardwood mulch or stones are the best choice. Hardwood slowly breaks down, creating a healthy sustainable soil. The pieces lock together to stay in place. 

As the University of Florida IFAS Extension explains, “Mulches are an increasingly important part of the Florida urban landscape. A mulched garden has better water and soil conservation. Mulches are also known to buffer soil temperature and prevent water loss from evaporation. Weed control either by inhibiting weed germination or suppressing weed growth is another benefit of mulches. These advantages and the increasing interest in mulching have resulted in a wide array of mulches available for the gardener and landscaper.”

A Few Tips for Mulching

Mulch should create a blanket over the soil, about 3 inches in depth. It should go out just past the drip line or the canopy of the tree. Just leave a space, around the truck or crown of the tree, like a donut, if not the mulch can end up causing damage. 

Also, make sure you don’t leave any mulch on a plant or shrub. Applying too much mulch can also damage plants, starving them of vital oxygen and other issues.

Not All Mulch is the Same

Some bag mulch can contain construction debris and toxic material, which can be detrimental to your plants. High quality mulch makes all the difference.

Bulk mulch from Reliable Peat offers the best quality, a premium not often found in bag mulch from big box stores. If you have any doubts, just look at the mulch itself. When you walk up to a pile of bulk mulch you can clearly physically see and even smell the quality. While bag mulch is a different story. It is hiding behind labels and logos. Often times it is wet and moldy, or even a different color than you were expecting.