You’re busy, so it makes sense to skip any unnecessary chores. And considering the heat in July, you probably aren’t feeling too keen on extra yard work anyway. So, you might be wondering whether it’s really necessary to mulch around your trees, or is this simply an aesthetic step that you could skip?
Actually, there are several important reasons that mulching around your trees is a good idea.
Mulch reduces erosion and water evaporation. Retaining more water in the soil around your tree’s roots provides more hydration for the tree, and also cuts down on the frequency of necessary watering.
Mulch helps the soil to retain nutrients. By reducing water runoff and erosion, you can retain more nutrients around your tree’s base. Adding a few inches of mulch will help the soil to provide more potassium, nitrogen, and phosporus to the tree.
Mulch keeps the roots cool in the summer and warm in the winter. A more stable temperature leads to a healthier tree. Of course, summer heat is a particular concern here in California.
Mulch reduces weeds. A layer of mulch will reduce weeds by up to 85 percent. You might prefer the look of a less weedy yard, but this also means you won’t need to weedeat close to the base of your tree.
Protect the base of your tree. And on that note, you should avoid weedeating near your tree, because tree trunks can sustain damage from the equipment. Over time, weakened trunks mean a weakened, sickly tree.
Mulch can nearly double your tree’s growth rate. It probably won’t surprise you to learn that healthy, well-nourished and hydrated trees will grow faster – up to almost twice as fast! That can be a big incentive when you’re trying to get a young tree established in your yard.
As you can see, mulching your trees might be yet another household task you need to perform. But once you’ve taken care of this step, you can actually save yourself time on other chores (frequent watering, weedeating, and so on). And of course, a healthy tree is a strong and stable tree, that is less likely to sustain damage over time.