Pros & cons of different types of mulch

A garden needs mulch to look and produce better. The basic idea behind using it; is regulating soil temperature, retaining soil moisture, and also; reducing the growth of weed. If you do it properly, it also enhances the landscaping beauty of the garden, and also prevents soil erosion.

The thing is that nothing in this world comes with just positives, or negatives. There always remains a balance between these two; which is necessary as well. Organic and inorganic mulches are quite different. The former ones break down to provide nutrients to the soil while the latter ones don’t decompose.

Here you have the list of pros and cons of different mulches that are being used by the gardeners.

Shredded Rubber

It is an inorganic mulch that is primarily made of recycled rubber. Since there comes a lot of scrap from rubber every year, it is a great idea to use it for something beneficial.

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Pros:

  • It has a capability to reduce the weed growth to a significant level.
  • During flooding, mulch holds much better to the ground, which helps prevent soil erosion.
  • Yet another benefit of rubber mulch is that it repels the insects that are harmful to the growth of plants and trees.

Cons:

  • Per cubic feet, it costs much more than any other mulching material. It indeed affects the cost savings of the homeowners.
  • Since it is made of rubber, there’s no denial of the fact that it burns quickly if exposed to flame; as insignificant as a lit cigarette.
  • When you need to remove the rubber mulch from the ground, well, it is extremely challenging. You might have to take off the topmost layer of soil to do that.

Leaf Litter Mulch

Leaves fall off the trees; that’s nothing to be surprised about. And we have to get rid of them for a simple reason that they can block gutters and downpipes. One great way to remove them without actually removing them is to use the leaves for mulching. Again, it has some benefits and some negatives. Let us have a look at both the sides of the coin.

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Pros:

  • Soil needs nutrients to maintain its fertility. Leaves contain a lot of nutrients which can you send back to the soil by just mulching them.
  • For the homeowners, the financial aspect of everything is a necessity. Well, with leave matter as mulch, you don’t have to spend a penny.
  • Shredding the leaves is quite easy. You just have to run a mower on them to make it happen. Or perhaps, you can use leaf shredders, which are made specifically for the purpose.

Cons:

  • Too many leaves from the native plants make the soil, ‘water repellent.’ This is because of the natural oil that these leaves contain.
  • If you don’t shred the leaf mulch, it can blow around very quickly.

Hardwood Bark Mulch

Made from the shredded barks of hardwood trees like maples and oaks, it is quite popular among the gardeners. Remember that no ground or waste wood pallets are used for the same. It is ideal for the people who want dark-brown, and not the reddish-brown color in their garden.

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Pros:

  • It is excellent when it comes to controlling the growth of weed.
  • Since it is made entirely of pure wood, there’s no chance that it will blow away. It is also ideal to prevent soil erosion.

Cons:

  • Hardwood mulch breaks down very quickly and thus need to be replaced sooner.
  • Also, it does not have an insect repellent quality, which is not quite great for the plants.

Conclusion

When you are looking forward to mulching your garden, make sure you know what to look out for. Every type of mulching material has something good and bad, and you must know it well in advance. The area where it has to be spread also helps you determine the type of mulch. To make it easier for you to understand, gravels and rocks look much better when used as mulch in front of a business center. Similarly, every type of mulch looks the best at a specific location. You need to find the right one for your garden.

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