Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Why Mulch?

This is a post reprint for May 6-12 International Compost Awareness Week. This important educational program is sponsored by the US Composting Council, with the theme of Compost! …Replenish the Earth for Generations, and supported by the Compost Council of Canada, with the theme of Give Back to the Earth … COMPOST!

Mulching is sort of a kissing cousin to composting.

According to the Ecological Agriculture Projects website, there are lots of good reasons to mulch.

  • controls weeds
  • protects roots
  • improves soil
  • reduces pests
  • keeps soil most
  • moderates soil temperatures
The last two reasons prompted me to start mulching. Last year, I planted my hillside potato patch during a warm spell. After only three days of watering from my 55-gallon rain barrel, it was over half empty.

I gathered a large tub of leaves and pine needles from the cliff-side path (with the added bonus of a neater trail). After a heavy watering, I spread the natural mulch over the potato bed and watered one more time. My hope was to keep the sprouting seed potatoes moist enough to keep growing during an upcoming two week absence.

I saved some of the leafy mulch for my strawberries in pots and a few seedlings that had to be hastily repotted. When I have to leave the cabin during warm summer months, I hope for rain. Between the mulch and a little extra moisture, everything should not only survive, but thrive.

The Ecological Agriculture Projects website is published by the Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at McGill University in Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, Quebec, Canada. Publications are available in French and English on a variety of agricultural and gardening topics. -- Margy


  1. For some reason your blog is not showing up on my blogs that I follow. I see your posts on Facebook though. I will start planting stuff in June, I don't have much of a sunny spot to garden in. The owners have a lot of pots occupying the sunny area and are slow in moving them to Cortes Island where they are currently living.

    I noticed our compost has a lot really nice rich soil that I can use when I plant some flowers and plants in June.

  2. hee hee...

    «Louis» thanks you very mulch for visiting San Francisco Bay Daily Photo.
    Sorry. He can't help himself sometimes...