Mulch 101 – Mulch and Your Garden Plus Handy Tips

Over the next few blog posts, I am going to discuss a number of important aspects of Mulch in the Garden. I will also share with you a fantastic video which is also available on the Centenary Landscaping Supplies main website. I will cover…

  1.  What is Mulch and it’s Purpose
  2.  Types of Mulches
  3.  How to Mulch and When to Mulch

Leaf Litter Mulch

What Is Garden Mulch?

You will be familiar with the leaf and twig matter that makes up the forest or bush floor. Over the years, trees constantly drop leaves and twigs to the ground in the bush. Also, the bush is filled with many forms of animals, both large and small who go about their business and indeed doing their business (pooing), foraging and eventually dying there. The resulting decay of organic matter and carcases, constitutes the forest floor’s natural mulch and compost that help nurture the plants and animals that depend upon it. This mulch is predominantly organic in nature but still supplemented by foliage (living mulch) and stone (inorganic) you’ll find in the bush and forest floor.

However, the domestic garden cannot sustain that level of leaf and twig drop, poo and decay that the bush provides to nurture and rejuvenate itself. So we as gardeners, need to seek suitable alternatives to use as mulch. Just like in the forest or bush the garden mulch has a number of purposes and comes in three different types…Organic, Living and Inorganic.


There Are Three Categories Of Landscape Mulch… 

An inorganic pebble mulch

1. Inorganic MulchBasically this type consists of rock and stone and materials that do not breakdown easily with water. In the garden, Centenary Landscaping Supplies has over 37 different types and sizes of decorative pebbles and gravels to choose from. These can be seen on our website by clicking here. This kind of mulch is often used in ‘dry’ gardening as it complements the nature of these types plants (ask your friendly nursery for plant advice). Also, this ‘mulch’ does not decay and though the initial price may be high, depending upon the particular decorative pebble or gravel selected, it will last ‘forever’ but will still need topping up from time to time, just as you need to with organic mulches but much less often.

Organic Mulch – Pine bark Mini Nuggets

2. Organic MulchThis is the most common form of mulch and is the one most typically represented by the natural forest explained above. At Centenary Landscaping Supplies we can offer you Brisbane’s largest range  of mulches to choose from and all in just One Place so you can see, feel, smell and then choose the one you want for your garden. It can be taken away in bags, by the trailer or ute load or have it delivered in one of our delivery trucks. Click here to see the range on our website with photographs and videos to help you make your decision.

Living Mulch ground cover

3. Living Mulch…You will see these kind of mulches naturally growing in the bush. We generally call these ground covers and often don’t think of them as mulches.  However, they protect the topsoil from harsh weather conditions by slowing moisture loss, controlling erosion and inhibiting weed growth all while protecting microbial activity in the top soil. Talk to you nursery for advice on the kind of ground covers that will do this mulching job for your garden. At the same time remember the ground cover is a plant and will compete for moisture as well.


The Purpose of MulchLike the forest floor, the purpose of mulch is to slow down moisture being lost to the topsoil, inhibit weed growth and nurture microbial activity in the topsoil and indeed look good. So it’s not just for moisture retention. Mulch will also slow and even prevent erosion or the washing away of the top soil in nature and in your garden.

How Mulch Works

In the second section we will talk about the types of landscape mulch available. There will also be a handy DIY video taking you through the step by step process of ordering, taking delivery and spreading your mulch throughout your garden. If you have never been to our yard, check out the video below, as you can see, we have a huge range of Mulch to choose from! Remember, though we store bulk mulch in large bays you are free to wander around and fill 40 Lt. bags or drive up to the bay in your car, ute or truck for larger loads.


More Information…

For more information on Mulch in the Garden go to the  ABC’s, Gardening Australia programmes…just click below.

  • Series 22 Episode 37 by Angus Stewart
  • Series 20 Episode 24 by Colin Campbell who have just passed away after a life dedicated to helping us all with our gardens by his presentation through many media including TV prolific writing on the topic.

Written and Photographed by:
Terry O’Shea
October, 2012


  1. Deanna R. Jones June 20, 2015 at 6:46 am - Reply

    It’s good to know that there are different types of living mulch that I can plant in my yard. I didn’t know that the plants that I think of ground covers can act as mulch to protect the topsoil from harsh weather conditions. It’s incredible how they can slow moisture loss and control erosion to protect my plants. It seems like I should plant some ground covers since my yard doesn’t really have a lot of living mulch.

  2. Anand Jain September 12, 2016 at 1:40 pm - Reply

    awesome information and the diagram is amazzzing …….thanks a lot to help me out in my project of organcs farming

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