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San Diego

The ABC’s of Mulching Your Flower Beds

Posted by San Diego Landscaper on Wednesday, 23 December , 2015

You may have been told that mulching is an excellent way to protect your landscape elements and conserve water, but has anyone ever told you how much mulch to place or how often to change it?  23 Here is a step-by-step guide with tips to help you choose and spread your mulch correctly.

  • Choose the right type of mulch. There are many different types of mulch from which to choose.  Here are a few examples:


Mulch Type Use Notes
Bark mulch To slow down weed growth and prevent moisture evaporation Wind resistant; many attractive colors; some may be toxic to young plants
Cocoa shells In most places where bark mulch is appropriate Offers a delicious chocolate aroma for 2 to 3 weeks; may grow mold if placed in high temperature areas, but the mold can be washed away; does not deplete nitrogen composition in soil
Cypress Anywhere mulch is needed Most common mulch; readily available and affordable; easy to apply
Pine needles On acid-loving plants such as azaleas or gardenias Decompose slowly and are very light, making them easy to spread; can be difficult to find in areas without native pines
Straw On food crops such as berries, tomatoes and herbs Can be easily uprooted by the wind and may harbor rodents; highly flammable
Wood chips Anywhere mulch is needed Attractive and durable; be sure to choose those that have not been pressure treated or chemically altered
Stones, pebbles or gravel Where moisture retention is key Attractive but expensive; will not blow away or burn.
Yard waste Anywhere recycled mulch is needed Eco-friendly; offers nutrients for the soil; free by mulching grass clippings or leaves from your own yard


  • Too much mulch can be harmful. Be sure to follow application directions for various mulch types.  The general rules is two to three inches of mulch spread over any size area.
  • Leave space around trees and bushes. Do not push mulch all the way up to the stems of a plant, as it can hold moisture and encourage rot.

If you need help choosing the right mulch for your landscape, contact Juniper Landscape Company for sound advice.  We can help you make your San Diego yard beautiful, healthy and eco-friendly.

Juniper Landscape Company is a provider of professional landscaping services in San Diego, we strive to make San Diego a beautiful place by doing business with integrity and creativity.


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