There is an art to mulching garden beds. It requires a little patience and some know-how. Of course, if you don’t want to mulch your own, you can always call Emerald Lawns at 512-990-2199.We can help. In this article, however, we’ll teach you some information on how to mulch garden beds.

What is mulch?

For our purposes, we’ll focus on organic mulch, the kind that decomposes. Types of organic mulch include grass clippings, straw, shredded bark, newspaper, wood chips or cocoa bean hulls. Pine needles and Cyprus mulch are also pretty common. Mulch helps to moderate soil temperature and weather damage. It also prevents weed growth and can help the yard maintain its soil moisture. Organic mulch further helps the yard by enriching the soil with essential nutrients and providing a welcome habitat for beneficial microorganisms like earthworms.

How much mulch should you use?

Typically, you should use between 2-4 inches of mulch in your garden or flower beds. If the mulch is too thin, you may not be adequately protecting your soil from weather damage as well as weeds. A layer that is too thick retains too much moisture and is not good for the garden either. You should also leave a few inches around the base of the plants free from mulch so that there will be good air circulation. You want to prevent mold from developing.

When should you mulch?

In a flower bed, it’s best to lay mulch in the latter part of the spring before the weather gets too warm. Before you apply the mulch, it is wise to remove weeds and roots from the garden. This ensures that weeds won’t spread in the mulched portion of your garden.

How do I apply the mulch?

You use a gardening shovel or rake to spread the mulch evenly. Remember – we said between 2-4 inches is a good amount of mulch to use. Don’t forget to leave space around the outside corner of the plants so that they have some room to breathe. If you have mulch left over from the previous year, you will want to fold this into the soil to help fertilize the soil this year. You can use a rototiller to do that, or hire a lawn care company to take care of it.

Do I get a rebate for mulching?

If you live in the city of Austin, if you mulch your yard 3 cubic yards or 80 cubic feet, you can get a rebate of $40 from the city. You have to keep the receipts from your purchases. Then, install the items. You will then take photos of the completed work and turn in the application, receipts and photos.

Emerald Lawns believes that mulched lawns and gardens are healthier and much better prepared for drought than non-mulched lawns. We have specially-crafted mulch that works well with Central Texas lawns and conditions. Call us today to set up an appointment.