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Mulch & Bark

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Enrich Your Soil and Add Colour & Texture to Your Garden with Mulch or Bark.

Here at Centenary Landscaping Supplies, we have over 20 different types of bark and much. We can supply it to you in pre-packaged bags right up to full truck loads delivered direct to your project. Visit out online store or the yard in Darra to see the full range.

The application of a good layer of mulch and compost in your garden is just as critical as choosing a good garden soil and quality plants. All too often little consideration if given to these gardening basics, and plants fail to flourish.

What is a Mulch

A mulch is any form of organic matter that can be used as a barrier between the atmosphere and the soil. This can include, manufactured products such as Hoop Mulch or Sugar Cane Mulch or even your own garden’s leaf litter. Next time you’re on a bush walk, just take a look around the forest floor where you’ll see mother nature at work, mulching her own “garden!” as the paths are generally covered in decaying organic matter.

What is the best Mulch

There is no one perfect mulch for every garden bed and every application. So how do you choose your mulch if there is not one best option? Well, we recommend visiting us here in Darra where you will get a chance to get up close and personal with all of our products. Pick the mulch up, smell it and choose what would look best in your garden! Provided you choose a quality mulch or bark product, they should all function the same, so in the end it becomes a choice based on aesthetics and longevity.

A Short Guide for Mulching your Garden

Mulch Basics

So why is a mulch so important?

And what will it do to help my garden thrive? Here’s 4 Points worth noting…

Moisture control 

This is by far the most important reason for using a mulch. Without a good layer of mulch (100mm or 4”), the sun and wind will cause the top 100mm of garden soil to dry out quickly putting your plants under extreme stress in a very short space of time. By adding mulch, the rate of evaporation is slowed dramatically and with water restrictions, any saving of water usage can only be beneficial not only to the environment but to your hip pocket.

Often we get complaints that plants are not growing well only to find when we visit that the garden has no mulch resulting in the garden soil drying out and even crusting, preventing water penetration.

Weed prevention

Having a physical barrier on top of the garden soil will inhibit weeds. Once a seed germinates and reaches the garden soil surface it needs sunlight to photosynthesize (produce food for growth). If a mulch is in place, just its physical presence will prevent most, if not all, potential weed problems thus allowing your plants to thrive without competition.

NB. Don’t use plastic under mulch, it prevents the passage of water and gases into the top soil and therefore this can hinder plant growth. We suggest you use a biodegradable mulch mat or newspaper.

Temperature moderation

This is another benefit of having this physical barrier. In our Queensland climate, top soil will absorb a considerable amount of heat, which in an un-mulched garden causes damage to sensitive plant roots near the soil surface. Also in those areas that have mild frosts, the mulch will again moderate the temperature making your garden soil a more “enjoyable” environment for your plants to grow!

Replacing organic matter

As the mulch decays, it helps maintain the soil’s open free draining structure. This can be seen if you walk through any rainforest or bushland where the ground underfoot is covered in decaying organic matter or nature’s mulch.

How does mulch work in the garden?

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This is a very common question and is a valid one considering here at Centenary Landscaping Supplies, we have over 20 different types to choose from. But when it’s all said and done, it is true to say that in general, all quality mulch will do the same job with regards to moisture, weed and temperature control.  In most cases, the buying decision for a mulch can be based on colour, texture and mulch prices to fit your budget.

There are, however, a number of questions that can be asked to narrow the mulch field and help you choose the best mulch for you:

  • Are you matching any other part of the garden with existing mulch?
  • Have you seen a mulch you like at the neighbors?
  • Do you generally like coarse or fine materials as mulch?
  • Is this a show garden, or down the back?
  • Am I just tidying the gardens up to prepare for the house to be sold?
  • Is it a vegetable or herb garden?

What volume of mulch do I need?

This is a very common but vital question when looking at any gardening project. You’ll need to work out the area of the garden to be covered in metres and simply divide by 10 which gives you the volume needed in cubic metres. This allows for 100mm coverage, which is recommended.

For quick reference: One cubic metre of mulch will cover ten square metres at a depth of 100mm (4 inches). Always remember, that you can call us at the office and get us to check over your figures if you just wanted to make sure. Sometimes two heads are better than one.

Over ordering is a waste as you’ll be giving the excess to your (un)grateful neighbour. Ordering to little can also be a waste as the mulch will not do the job you expect and you’ll be needing to order more sooner than later. Measure twice and order once!

What about Plastic or Weed Mat under the Mulch?

One of the main reasons for actually mulching the garden is to minimise the amount of weeds that come through and there is no doubt that putting a layer of material under the mulch will help in prevention.

That said, plastic should definitely NOT be used as a weed control mechanism in the garden. The reason for that is that while it will stop a lot of weeds, it will not let water drain through to the garden soil where it needs to be in order to be accessed by the plants. It may also trap small pools of water under the mulch that could become stagnant and smell, or even breed mosquitoes.

If you are reading this and have already used plastic…. The solution is to wander around the garden with a garden fork, punching holes through the plastic layer so that water can drain away.  Mulch Mat is a thin woven fabric that will let the garden breathe, let the water drain through while preventing most weeds from coming through. A good thick layer of much, along with either mulch mat or newspaper are far better options for weed supression.