Is Mulch The Best Way To Keep Weeds From Sprouting Up?

Is Mulch The Best Way To Keep Weeds From Sprouting Up?

Are you struggling with weeds? Wondering if mulch will help your garden be weed-free? All gardens contain weeds, active or dormant. Some weed seeds may stay dormant for years if left undisturbed underground. Sunlight enables them to germinate and start rapid growth. When you first start a garden, you may want to research the best ways to prevent weeds in your area.

Ways to Prevent Weeds

At Chris James Landscape we do our best to prevent weeds from the start. We know that weeding your garden can become a time-consuming task. Prevention is the best control. There are several ways to prevent weeds that include:

  1. Cultivate with caution. Avoiding unnecessary tilling after creating your garden or flower bed is key to its success.
  2. Apply pre-emergent herbicides. These are chemicals to prevent weeds from germinating.
  3. Mulch the beds. Help the soil retain moisture while smothering weeds.
  4. Grow plants close together. Use the closest recommended spacing given on the plants you are planting.
  5. Create a drought. Only water the plants you want to grow, not the entire bed.

Cultivate with Caution

When you are first preparing a new flowerbed or garden, tilling may not be avoidable. After you have it all set up, try to avoid tilling or hand-cultivating. There are lots of weed seeds that may stay inactive if left alone underground. When you are tilling, they may get moved closer to the surface, which allows germination. Once weeds go through germination, they may rapidly grow and spread even more.

Applying Pre-Emergent Herbicides

Pre-emergent herbicides stop weed seeds from germinating. These chemicals are to target specific combinations of weeds or weed families. Treatment will allow you to prevent weeds without damaging existing plants you may have. You activate a pre-emergent herbicide with water. After applying it, you should water the area thoroughly. Watering also helps it penetrate deep into the soil where the seeds are.

Mulching Your Beds

Before you put down mulch in your garden or flowerbed, make sure you remove all the weeds and apply a pre-emergent herbicide. There are various types of mulch that you can use. Some include newspaper, hardwood chips, cardboard, straw, or plastic sheeting. 

When choosing which mulch to use, you should consider using a mulch that helps the soil as it degrades. You want your mulch to be at least 2-4 inches deep so it will suppress the weeds and retain moisture. The thickness of the mulch also blocks sunlight from helping the weeds grow. An organic mulch may attract crickets or beetles that can help with devouring the weeds as they emerge. Mulch will need replenishing every couple of months as it degrades to continue to work effectively.

Growing Plants Close Together

Determine the plants that you would like to use first. Once you’ve chosen the type of plants you would like to grow the next step is to determine the proper spacing recommendations. You can use a block spacing grid to do rows of plants or design your layout. Before planting new plants, inspect them for any stray sprouts that may be there if plants came from a nursery. 

Create a Drought

Watering your plants is an important part of helping them grow. However, you do not want to saturate the entire area because that will make the weeds grow. When you water your plants, try to water directly around the base of each plant. 

Need Help? Call us Now!

Keeping your weeds under control can become very time-consuming. Chris James Landscape is ready to help you! We proudly service Allendale, New Jersey as well as other surrounding cities. Give us a call today and see how we can help you keep your yard beautiful.