One of the most frequent questions asked is “if there was one thing I could do to improve the appearance and health of my trees what would that be?” The answer is quite simple, “mulch”. Mulches provide numerous benefits for trees and shrubs. They moderate soil temperatures, reduce soil moisture loss, reduce soil compaction, provide nutrients, improve soil structure, prevent mower and strimmer damage to the tree trunk. These benefits result in greater root growth and healthier plants. However, when applying mulch the following guidelines should be observed:
Ideal mulch materials are composted leaves, wood chips, bark nuggets, or pine needles. Plastic, stone, sawdust, finely shredded bark, and grass clippings should be avoided. Mulch should be applied from the canopy drip line to the trunk and applied directly to the soil surface. A mulch layer should be 5-10 cms thick depending on tree species and mulch and not placed against the trunk.
Application of mulch can have a marked impact on the health and vigor of your tree. Why not try it and see!