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Stripped, Compacted, and Depleted? How Organic Mulch Can Improve Soil Conditions 

By July 30, 2019 July 31st, 2019 Blog

Every great landscape begins and ends with two things: rich soil and organic mulch. They should be the foundation and finishing touches for all your customers’ projects. Provide the right products, and you will keep consumers coming back for more.

The Delaware Valley region is a great place to live and garden. But, like most urban areas, it has seen a tremendous amount of development that has stripped, compacted, and depleted the soil. Good topsoil is hard to come by, but essential for beautiful, thriving landscapes. Improved soil conditions are a must when installing new projects for your customers or rehabbing old ones.

Organic mulch plays a critical role in improved soil conditions. But how does it get gardens on the road to improved soil conditions?

First, not all mulch is the same. And only organic mulch, made from living materials (chopped leaves, straw, grass clippings, and wood chips) can improve soil conditions as it decomposes over time. A 2 to 3-inch deep layer of organic wood mulch added to beds and throughout landscapes will immediately:

  1. Eliminate weed germination and growth
  2. Reduce moisture loss through evaporation
  3. Control erosion
  4. Insulate soil and plant roots from sun and frost damage
  5. Provide a finished, uniform look to landscapes

These immediate benefits are pretty impressive! But, just as important, are the long-term advantages of organic mulch.

Here’s where the magic happens.

All soil is made up of basically four elements: weathered rock, organic matter, water, and air. When they are in balance, landscapes will thrive. For immediate help, mixing in some top-quality compost may be in order, but over time the wood mulch will be the real rock star.

Here’s why:

Organic Matter

Although only making up about 5-10% of soil, organic matter is crucial to a healthy landscape. As we noted earlier, to jumpstart that 5-10% you may need to mix compost into the top 6 inches or so of the topsoil. But, over time, wood mulch will breakdown and add soluble sugar, chlorophyll, and, contrary to popular opinion, even nitrogen. The decaying mulch will attract earthworms and other organisms that speed the process and distribute the organic matter throughout the soil.

Air

Well-aerated soil is another key to success. Healthy soil is about 25% air. The organic mulch helps aerate it by adding larger pieces of material and also encouraging organisms to travel throughout helping with the decaying process. Their movement and excretions will aerate and bind soil particles together to create a loose, crumbly, and rich mixture.

Water

Water is life. It’s no different in soil.  Again, healthy soil will contain about 25% water. Well- aerated soil with a healthy dose of organic matter will retain moisture more efficiently.  Aeration and increased organic matter are both achieved with organic wood mulch. And remember, the mulch on top of the beds will shade and prevent evaporation.

Don’t just take our word for it!

According to a study in the Scientific Journal of the National Society of Arboriculture, Arboriculture & Urban Forestry:

“Research shows strong evidence that compost top dressings and wood chip mulches are effective and also cost-efficient methods for improving soil quality and stimulating tree growth in compacted urban landscape soils.” “The wood chip treatment significantly decreased bulk density and increased soil moisture, organic matter, and microbial respiration.”

So, providing better mulch for your customers will ultimately improve their soil conditions and create beautiful landscapes!

Contact us today to learn more about our recycled, organic wood mulch. It’s perfect to have on hand for your customers. Plus, we also offer free delivery to garden centers, landscape yards, and even your job sites (within a 50-mile radius)!