How to Create Mulch!
Mulch is a layer of material laid on the soil surface to discourage weeds and prevent moisture loss, it also sometimes provides your plants with extra nutrients.
Types of mulch vary; the most natural is looser, organic material which is laid on top of the soil about 8cm deep. You can include pretty much anything in your organic mulch - try chipped bark, garden compost, leaf mould or grass clippings.
Non organic mulches include gravel chippings, pebbles, sheet mulches, old carpet and even black polythene.
Organic mulches are recommended because they are natural, cheap and better for your plants. They also encourage worms and other creatures to churn nutrients into the soil. Bark is the most attractive mulch you can choose, it blends in better than grass clippings and polythene sheets.
Some plants prefer inorganic mulch. Gravel can be used around alpines because it helps drainage, certain plants may rot if smothered by a think layer of organic mulch. You can buy ready-made sheet mulch for certain plants which can be helpful if they have just been planted. Sheet mulch will prevent weeds effectively but won’t provide your plants with any extra nutrients.
Mulch is best applied to weed-free soil in spring when the soil is moist. Organic mulches need to be topped up every spring, while inorganic mulches only need to be added once.