4 Uses for Bark Mulch

Bark mulch is one of the most useful types of mulch you can buy for your garden. With several different uses, it’s something that can be used in every season. Bark mulch is often used for decorative purposes, but with mulch in the name, it can be used for its original purpose too. The versatility of bark mulch, along with its cheap price, makes it a very popular item.

1. Paths

Good bark mulch makes excellent paths in the garden. You need to lay the mulch at least 2 inches thick to provide a good cushion for the feet and to help stop weeds growing through. You’ll have even fewer problems with weeds if you put weed fabric down first along the path. This is material that’s intended to stop light reaching the ground, which ensures weeds can’t grow. Cut this to the dimensions of the path and then pour bark mulch on top.

You’ll find it will last for several years, although it will dry out during the summer. Be careful that the bark mulch doesn’t cause holes in the weed fabric.

2. Borders

The use of bark mulch in borders will lessen the chances or airborne weeds germinating. The mulch covers the soil and so fewer seeds will penetrate through. For this you’re best to use mulch make of smaller pieces of bark as these will give better coverage. This kind of bark mulch should last in the borders for between 3 years and 5 years before it needs to be replaced.

3. Winter Mulch

Apply the bark mulch in the winter when the garden needs it most. Not only does it keep the weeds at bay, bark mulch provides insulation from the cold for the seeds in the soil. By spring, when you’re ready to plant seedlings, you can do this through the bark mulch. As it’s very cheap, bark mulch is one of the most favored mulches for beds and borders. Don’t put on too much, just enough to give a good covering on the soil and offer proper protection.

Use bark mulch in the areas around trees and bushes. It works best if used in areas where you don’t plan to dig much, mostly because of its size. For bed and borders that will be turned often, use a leaf mulch as this will break down more quickly and feed the soil well.

4. Decorative

In addition to its use on pathways, bark mulch can act as decoration, giving accents to a bed or a border. It can be especially useful when you’ve recently made or filled the area before the plants have had a chance to fill in the spaces (remember, you need to leave ample room between plants for them to grow and reproduce over the years). It looks much better than bare soil. Use at least 1 ½ inches of mulch on the ground. In the spring of the second year you should clear the mulch away to give the seeds chance to grow through properly. Replace in the fall.