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Top 5 Mulching Mistakes

Updated: Apr 30

If mulching is at the top of your to-do list this month, we are here to help! When mulching this season, be sure to avoid these 5 mistakes that could hurt your yard’s health.

1. Say NO to “mulch mountains”: In order for trees to grow, they need oxygen, nutrients, water, and light. A mountain of mulch is going to prevent your trees and shrubs from getting what they need to thrive. Instead of piling it on, try a 3-inch layer of mulch that extends to the trees drop line. This will help promote growth and overall health.

2. Follow the drip line: If you've never heard of “mulching to the drip line,” you probably aren't in the landscaping business - and that's okay! That’s why we're here to help. The drip line is where the water lands on the ground from the tree's outermost limbs. This water specifically feeds to the tree's smallest roots. Imagine drawing an imaginary line around the outer most limbs in mulch.

3. Choose the correct mulch: All mulches are not created equal. There are many types of mulch, with some of the most popular being shredded bark, wood chips, compost, recycled rubber and gravel. Do your research first and consult with a landscaper before picking a mulch for your beds, gardens, and trees.

4. Mulch does expire! Do not use old mulch. We repeat: Do not use old mulch! You may be tempted to use that extra bag left over from last season, but would you eat a bag of lettuce from last year for lunch? Mulch that sits for too long will be prone to being full of pest, mold, fungi, and bacteria - needless to say, these are not ideal for feeding your plants! Dirty mulch can be just as bad for plants as old mulch. Sometimes local dumps may offer free or discounted mulch, but beware - it can also be full of pests and may even transfer disease to the trees and plants on your property.

5. Time your mulching project: Choosing the best time to mulch is just as important as choosing the correct time to plant your flowers. It is best to mulch when the ground is damp (this goes for both spring and fall). Your best time for spring mulching is anytime from late April through May.

If you're not mulching like a pro after following these 5 don'ts, DO contact us 443-846-0199 or - we can help you make (and install) good mulching choices.

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