Mulching has been a time-honored horticultural practice used to help retain and manage innumerable plant landscapes throughout the world. Most well-manicured landscapes have shrubs, trees, or large softscape arrangements covered with mulch. However, mulch provides far more than just a clean and organized appearance. It greatly benefits your landscape in several ways.
At Northern Virginia Landscaping, we devote ourselves to providing services that keep your landscape in healthy and lasting shape. Our home landscaping company is made up of certified experts in horticulture, botany, and arboriculture who have worked on landscapes in Arlington and throughout Northern Virginia. Upon hiring us, you’ll receive experienced professionals who are highly-skilled and knowledgeable in their field. Our services include softscape arrangements, hardscape construction, as well as drainage and grading.
Here’s what you should know about mulching for your landscape:
How Does Mulch Help With Landscape Growth?
Mulching involves spreading a layer of material around the bare soil of each plant in your landscape. This layer of organic (or inorganic) material acts as a sort of shield and insulation for your plants. Adding mulch to your various shrubs, trees, and other plants in your landscape bestows several benefits that help them grow healthy and strong. Here are just a few of them:
Prevents Water Loss
One major benefit of mulch in your landscape is that it helps retain water and soil moisture near your plants. This then encourages growth by consistently providing your plants with nutrients and water throughout the season.
Buffers Soil Temp
Another important aspect of mulching is that it acts as a form of insulation for your plants. Studies have shown that soil temperature can make a large impact on a plant’s living functions such as root growth, nutrient absorption, and more. Mulch can help sustain these functions under extreme conditions, keeping your plants warm during cold weather, or keeping them cool during hotter weather.
Mulching also assists in reducing the number of weeds surrounding your plants. This is because it reduces the amount of sunlight that reaches the soil, ensuring it only reaches your plants and excludes the weeds around them.
Mulch also keeps the soil around your plants from eroding by acting as a barrier against heavy rains. This means that when compared to other unmulched landscapes, your plants will have more nutrients and water available to it no matter what happens, meaning they will be able to grow healthy and strong throughout the rainy season.
What Types of Mulch Should I Use?
Reading the above benefits may help you decide to mulch your landscape, but there is another decision to be made before you do so: what kind of mulch should you use? The answer depends on your landscape and the plants you have in it, but it isn’t too difficult to discern as there are two main types of mulch to choose from: organic and inorganic.
Organic mulch is made up of natural materials like hardwood chips, pine straw, grass clippings, and crushed leaves. This kind of mulch is highly-effective at inducing plant growth, as the organic matter it is made out of breaks down over time and provides nutrients to the soil. This means that you’ll have to replace your mulch more often, as it is ideal for plants that need plenty of nourishment but are being grown in poorly fertile soil.
Inorganic mulch is made up of mineral or synthetic materials like pebbles, crushed rock, plastic, rubber mats or chips. For the most part, inorganic mulch functions just as well as organic mulch, but may not provide the same benefits, such as providing nutrients as it breaks down. However, one benefit it has is that it helps make much larger gardens and landscapes more manageable to retain and protect, as they last longer and don’t degrade as easily.
Northern Virginia Landscaping: Reliable Home Landscaping Company in Arlington, VA
Mulching is a practice every gardener and landscaper should perform if they want their plants to remain healthy and strong. At Northern Virginia landscaping, mulching is a major part of our softscaping process, ensuring the landscapes we work on retain their vibrant appearance. As the top home landscaping company in Arlington and throughout Northern Virginia, we perform services with a comprehensive degree of detail and care. Contact us at (703) 982-0100 for more information and to schedule an appointment with one of our landscaping specialists.