Landscaping can be a lot of work and may require a lot of decision-making as well. Unfortunately, the last thing most DIY homeowners want to think about is what type of mulch is best for whatever plants or garden items they are putting into the ground. However, mulch can be a pretty important factor in the success of your landscaping. So how do you choose which one is right for you?

Stone or Gravel Mulch

Stone and/or gravel are popular choices when it comes to mulching. Not only do they add visual appeal to most landscapes — they can aid a little bit in future gardening work as well. Stone mulch can be very attractive because of its variety in colors and ability to spice up your landscape design. What’s more, it also prevents erosion to some extent. However, this type of mulch will add no nutrients to your plants as they will not erode into the soil, which may be a big factor for some landscapers.

Bark Mulch and Wood Chips

If the dirt you’re using for your landscaping lacks a sufficient amount of nutrients, this type of mulch may be best for you. The bark mulch and wood chips will degrade over the course of the year, putting those much-needed nutrients into the soil in a timely manner that lasts. However, you do have to consider replacement costs and work. You will most likely need to replace this type of mulch annually.

Selecting Your Mulch

If you decide that wood chips are the best option for your landscaping, you will have a few more choices to make. Just as there are a variety of tree types, there are also a variety of wood chip types. Cedar is the most popular type of wood chip due to its attractive look and smell. It is also said to repel insects, and that can never be a bad thing. If you want to keep the ground more moist, Cypress wood chips are your best bet. If you’re looking to save on costs but still purchase wood chips, pine wood chips are relatively inexpensive but still do a decent job as well.

Straw Mulch

Although this isn’t necessarily a popular choice, it is still a viable option when it comes to keeping your landscape healthy. Straw is a good option if you need to put nutrients back into the soil fairly quickly. It tends to degrade the fastest, making it great for that purpose. This type of mulch, however, is not the prettiest and can blow around if your yard is often a victim to the wind.

These are just a few of the endless choices when it comes to mulch. If you aren’t satisfied with the types listed above, visit a local professional to get a more in-depth view of what types of mulch are available and what their “claim to fame” is. Mulch is not just about making your landscaping look good, but also about making sure your hard work doesn’t go to waste. With the right mulch, your landscaping will look gorgeous and complete in no time!

Written by Mike West, owner of WestCo Grounds Maintenance. WestCo provides the best solutions for Lawn Care Jefferson City MO has to offer. They also specialize in irrigation and lawn sprinkler service.