I recently watched an episode of Rock the Block on HGTV where the four teams’ challenge was to design the houses’ exteriors. Landscaping is one area of your outdoor living space that improves the curb appeal and increases your home’s value.
Mulch was a material each ‘Block Team’ used. However, they each had their preference of which type to use. It was a necessary item for each team, which was used strategically and generously by all.


If your yard was a cake, mulch is the icing. Mulch is any material spread or laid over the surface of the soil as a covering. It comes in many forms and has many benefits.
The valuable attributes of mulch include:
  • It serves as a form of protection that retains moisture in the soil and reduces weed growth.
  • It acts as an insulating blanket that moderates soil temperature.
  • It keeps disease spores from bouncing off the soil and onto your plants, reducing fungus and bacteria.
  • It makes your garden beds more attractive and creates borders.

Mulch comes in two forms: organic and inorganic. Each type comes in multiple textures, looks, and aromas. Organic helps improve the soil’s structure, drainage, and nutrient-holding capacity as they decompose. Since they decompose, they need to be replaced.

Organic mulches include:
  • Shredded or chipped bark or cedar
  • Pine bark and straw
  • Manure
Inorganic or synthetics also do a suitable job of holding moisture and blocking weeds, but they do not add nutrients to the soil. Since inorganic mulch does not decompose as quickly as organic, it does not have to be replaced as often.
Synthetic mulch includes:
  • Shredded rubber from recycled tires
  • Landscape Fabric
  • Plastic
  • Stone/Gravel
As with icing, mulch comes in different colors to accent your home’s exterior. There is no right or wrong mulch. There are so many more varieties of mulch than the ones mentioned in this article. Depending upon your personal preference and budget, the team at Artistic Tree and Landscape Creations will help you select the best mulch for your plants, trees, and flowers. Call us at 412-303-4443.