What is Mulch?

Mulch in San Diego CA is a layer of material that is applied to soil as a means to provide protection from the sun’s heat and conserving moisture, to help improve the fertility of the soil, to keep weed grown down and to enhance the visual appeal of the garden.

Mulch is generally an organic product, although not exclusively so. Some mulch can be permanent like bark chips or used a temporary application such as plastic sheeting. If you use a mulch made from manure or compost, you will add it directly to the existing soil and the microbiology of the earth will take over. Worms and other organisms will, over time, integrate the mulch with the existing soil. With this process, the quality of the soil is greatly enhanced and thereby creates an environment for plants to thrive.

Landscapers use all sorts of materials to create healthy and appealing mulch. Some products are purely organic while others can be treated chemically to perform such tasks as preventing the growth of weeds. The most common materials used to create mulch in San Diego CA are leaves and grass clippings, hay and straw, shredded bark and shells. Sometimes shredded newspaper and cardboard will be used as well as animal manure.

If you plan to use compost as a mulch product, you want to make sure the material has been fully composted to avoid possible phytotoxicity issues and that the seeds of weeds have been removed, otherwise you will be encouraging the growth of weeds rather than reducing it.

There are also rubber mulches which are made from recycled tire rubber. This product works great in areas where children play as it reduces the impact should a child fall and the rubber does not create splinters like common wood mulch chips can do.

Plastic mulch in San Diego CA has holes or slits put into it through which crops can grow. Plastic mulching like this is generally done by production-scale vegetable growers using millions of acres of land.

Rock and gravel can make a natural and effective mulch as well. Used in cooler climates, the heat that is retained by the rocks can actually extend the life of the growing season.

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