The Benefits of Mulching
Applying a mulch to your beds and borders and in the fruit and vegetable garden has several important benefits. Weeds are supresssed, water is retained and mulching also helps to maintain heat levels.
It is very important to apply a mulch over thoroughly wet soil. The best time to do this is late winter and early spring when the rain has completely soaked the soil. If you need to apply a mulch at any other time then soak the area first, preferably with rainwater.
Clear away any remaining garden debris, root out any perennial garden weeds and apply one of the Westland mulches over the garden soil. Each one helps to suppress garden weeds, improve and retain soil moisture and will also insulate plant roots against extreme cold or heat.
Choose Bed & Border Chipped Bark or Landscape Bark for large areas or around big established plants, or for smaller borders, containers and ornamental gardens opt for Decorative Mini Bark. Our new Plant Protection Bark suppresses weed growth, helps to retain moisture and also contains a natural slug barrier protecting plants from slug and snail damage.
Gro-Sure Farmyard Manure can also be used as a mulch. Spread over ornamental or vegetable beds the natural action of worms and other insects will gradually help incorporate it into the soil improving structure and increasing nutrient levels
Home compost can also be used as a garden mulch to help replenish what has been depleted from the soil by plant growth.
How to Apply a Bark Mulch
It is very important to apply a mulch over thoroughly wet soil.
The best time to mulch is late winter and early spring when the rain has completely soaked the soil. If you need to apply a mulch at any other time then soak the area first, preferably with rainwater.
Dig out any perennial weeds from the whole area, making sure the taproots of weeds such as dandelions are removed whole. On persistent weeds use Resolva 24H Weedkiller. This is very important, as any small pieces of roots will grow again and push up through the mulch. Annual weeds will be smothered by the mulch and will die.
If you are applying the mulch to open, bare soil then apply a general fertiliser such as Growmore or Gro-Sure All Purpose Slow Release Plant Food to the area first. If you want the mulch to last longer then spread a layer of planting fabric such as Weed Block over the area first and apply the mulch over the top of this fabric.
Spread a layer of mulch around the plants in your border, to a depth of 5cm (2in) taking care not to allow it to touch the stems of young plants initially. Mulch around clumps of plants and shrubs, until you have created a uniform surface over the whole area. Any dust will be washed off when it rains. Choose Bed & Border Chipped Bark for great effects on large beds & borders.