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Mulch - For a Completely New Look
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Home Generator: A Buyer's Guide
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Mulch - For a Completely New Look

If you want to truly create a new look for your lawn, consider adding some mulch.  Many homeowners find that this process by itself gives their lawn and their entire home a new image that wows both the neighbors and their own family. Furthermore, mulch has other advantages as well. For instance, mulch can be an effective protector for the plants' root systems, since it provides rich nutrients in the soil that the plants rely on. Also, mulch can help prevent soil erosion, it can hold moisture in the soil, and it can help fight those pesky weeds that otherwise would try to crowd their way through the soil.

For mulch to be truly effective, you need to be sure to select the right kind, and you need to apply it correctly. And to apply it correctly, you must first know something about it. For instance, there are two major categories of mulch: organic and inorganic. 

One kind of mulch that many homeowners love is compost. Compost is made of things that most people typically throw away, such as scraps of fruits or vegetables, leaves, newspaper, and even dog or cat hair. If you're using compost, you should put it down first, and afterward cover it with some bark to make it look better.

Something else that makes good mulch are grass clippings. The best part about this type of grass is that it's affordable, because everybody already has some. It's just a matter of cutting the grass, then drying out the clippings. Once it's dried, spread it around your plants and flowers. Because grass has a lot of nitrogen in it, vegetable gardens especially benefit from this type of mulch.

Just like everybody has grass, most people also have a lot of leaves in their yard.  It's a simple matter, especially if you have a lawn mower that has a mulcher attached, to cut up the leaves and spread them about your plants. Or if you don't have leaves, you can use sawdust, as long as it's at least a year old.  If you do choose to use sawdust, it will work better if you add some fertilizer enriched with nitrogen.

Bark from trees also makes good mulch but we don't suggest you go carve your own off trees. You can actually buy bark for this purpose, in three main types:  nuggets, chunks and shredded. And while we're talking about wood options, you can also use wood chips or shavings for mulch. Most people find these especially attractive, but as with the sawdust, you need to make sure it's at least a year old.  If it's not old enough, it could still have acids that might harm the plants. These plants go away after several months, which is why you should let it age before using it.

So far, we've bee talking about organic things you can use as mulch. There are also some inorganic options. For instance, you could spread a sheet of plastic around the base of where your plants are. This will keep out excess water as well as air.  Then, to create a nice look, place some bark on top of the plastic. Or if you prefer, you could use brick and / or stone. You would sit these close together, thus offering some weed control. It's important, though, to go with darker colored bricks so that they don't reflect heat to the plants, thus damaging them.

Any of these mulching options will serve much the same purpose: protecting your plant life and encouraging maximum growth, thus helping to beautify your landscape.

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