Do-it-yourself mulch

Do-it-yourself mulch

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Do-it-yourself mulch: how to prepare a layer of "mulching" material and how to renew it from cultivation to cultivation.

Mulch, what is it

Theremulchit is an agricultural practice that consists in spreading a layer of material (better if organic) at the base of the cultivated plants.

Mulch, when done

In spring for summer crops, in late summer, autumn or winter for early crops. In the vegetable garden it is always mulching time!

Mulch, what is it for

Theremulchit is a very useful and multiple technique advantages. What is mulching used for?

  • To protect the root system of plants from winter frosts and intense summer radiation;
    the mulch layer acts as an insulator (except for plastic in summer which can damage plants with slender trunk).
  • To maintain the structure of the soil;
    the soil, protected by the mulch, remains softer and does not compact.
  • To save irrigation water; the layer of mulching material retains moisture in the soil, slowing down its evaporation.
  • To avoid nutrient leaching and maintain soil fertility; the excess water pushes the micronutrients contained in the soil into the depth.
  • To protect the land from erosion.
  • To limit the growth of weeds.

As is clear, ibenefits of mulchingare so many. What are you waiting for to implement this simple practice?

Do-it-yourself mulch

Just follow a few simple rules to restore an old onemulchor spread a new layer of material to protect your crops.

The most suitable mulch for flower beds is made of biodegradable material so, over time, it will disintegrate, releasing precious organic matter in the soil.

Before preparing a layer of mulch, it is necessary to remove from the garden, from the flowerbed or from the feet of the plant to mulch, all weeds. Here are some simple notions to follow to prepare a good oneDIY mulch:

  • - eliminate all weeds and root residues, especially when it comes to broad-leaved weeds.
  • - To make mulching effective, when using organic matter, keep it in a thickness range between 5 and 10 cm.
  • - In case of mulching at the foot of a tree (palms, maples, horse chestnuts ...) it is recommended to leave a margin of 10 - 15 cm around the base of the trunk to allow space for any jets.
  • - Themulchit has to be renewed often. Observe it monthly and, as soon as it decomposes, you will have to bury the old one and add the new one.

DIY mulch, materials

The best mulch to use is composed of organic matter, which is also easier to find for setting up a goodDIY mulch. Get organic material such as:

  • straw
  • Dry leaves*
    * only of non plantssprayed with pesticides
  • Lawn mowing grass *
    * only if you don't use pesticides on the lawn
  • Crushed coniferous bark
  • Expanded clay
  • Coconut fiber

The coniferous bark, expanded clay and coconut fiber, in addition to providing excellentmulch,they offer a good aesthetic impact because they are also beautiful to look at (especially the barks!).

DIY mulch with Plastic, bioplastic or non-woven fabric

Other materials to be used in the practice ofmulchare thebiofilm, biodegradable plastics derived from the processing of corn, or non-woven fabric. Plastic as a mulching material is not suitable for flower beds and does not have a good aesthetic impact in the vegetable garden, however in winter it can be useful. Plastics, like bioplastics, tend to insulate the ground from the cold and create a kind ofsmall greenhousemaximizing solar irradiation.

On the other hand, in the summer months, the plastic overheats and if it comes into contact with the collar of some more sensitive plants it risks burning them. For all information on theDIY mulch with plastic or bioplasticwe refer you to the article "Biodegradable plastic for packaging “.

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