Tips for Mulching

Remember Not To Build Volcanoes!

Not all plants are the same, but these basic directions provide good rule-of-thumb guidelines for applying mulch.

Spring Fever
After a long, cold winter, nothing says Spring is here like a new bed of mulch. So apply mulch in the early Spring. Not only will it look great, it will help warm the soil and make your neighbours envious!

Stay Out Of The Weeds
Always weed before applying mulch.

Scratch The Surface
Lightly rake the soil to loosen up the surface before mulching.

Feed First
This is an ideal time to feed evergreen and acid-loving plants such as Rhododendrons, Azaleas, Dogwoods and Hollies with a high quality plant food.  So before you mulch, apply it in a circle around the drip line of shrubs or trees.

How Much Mulch Is Too Much Mulch
A uniform depth of 5 to 10 cm works for most mulches around established plants. Mulch that’s too deep can actually smother young plants.

No Volcanoes
Never pile up mulch next to anything. Keep mulches 5 to 10 cm away from the stems of woody plants and 15-20 cm away from buildings to avoid pests such as rodents or termites and other insects.

Put A Ring Around It
When mulching around trees, the mulch should extend away from the plant to a little beyond the drip line. The basic idea is to cover a realistic portion of the root system.

Give It The Smell Test
Replenish or replace mulch when it decomposes. Mulch should smell woody or earthy; if mulch smells sour like vinegar, replace it immediately.