Mulch Installation Services
Alfonza’s mulch is used as a protective cover over soil to retain its moisture and thus improve plant life. Quite often landscapers use shrubs, trees, and flowering plants native to South Carolina, but not all soils in Columbia SC can perfectly grow all plants. This is the reason why landscapers install mulches to ensure soil’s nutrients and moisture is maintained.
What is, “mulch”?
Mulch is, by most definitions, a protective covering that is spread or left on the ground to reduce evaporation, maintain even soil temperature, prevent erosion, control weeds, and enrich the soil. Mulching is one of the easiest, most beneficial tools you can use in the yard or garden. Mulch is an inexpensive, protective layer of material (this could be shredded tree bark, pine needles, rubber mulch, rocks, wood chips, etc.) that is spread on top of the soil. Mulch can be used for entire garden ‘beds’, borders around homes and structures, and around individual trees, shrubs, annuals, and perennials. Mulching is an important practice for establishing new plantings, as well as maintaining the health of older, established ones. In addition to being useful around plants, mulch can also be used as a general groundcover for walkways, trails, and play areas.
How does Mulch work?
- Controls weeds – adding a thick base (3-4 inches) around your plants, shrubs and trees, will deter weeds from growing.
- Increases moisture retention – this means less watering during the summer, which, in turn equals water conservation!
- Regulates temperature- mulch keeps plants cool in the summer and warm in the winter. It helps to regulate soil temperature and insulate your plants, trees and shrubs.
- Protects barren soil from taking a beating from sunlight- prevents a hot, dry root environment.
- Reduces soil erosion- defends the top layer of soil from hard rains and wind.
- Makes mowing easier-A ring of mulch around your trees and shrubs makes mowing a lot easier; allowing you to mow right up to the edge of the mulch. Mulch around trees/shrubs also protects surface roots from damage by mowing equipment.
General Guidelines on How to Apply Mulch
Weed Before You Mulch
Always remove perennial weeds like docks, dandelions, plantains, and grasses before you mulch. Treating with a weed-killing chemical is an additional option, in conjunction with pulling the weeds. Mulch should be applied to a weed-free soil surface. Simply covering perennial weeds such as Bermuda grass or nutsedge will not prevent their growth.
Thin, fine particles like compost or finely shredded mulch are best laid only 2 inches (5.1 cm) to no more than 3 inches (7.6 cm) deep around most plants and trees. If you put down a thicker layer than that, you risk reducing oxygen to the roots. Sandy soils dry out quickly and often benefit from a slightly deeper mulch layer (3 to 4 inches).If the particle size of your mulch is larger, like straw, pine needles, chunks of bark, or rock, they can be applied up to 4 inches (10 cm) deep. The larger spaces between the chunks allow more air and light in, so you will need a thicker layer for effective weed control, water conservation, and protection from cold.