Mulch For Your Vegetable Garden The key to saving lots of time maintaining your vegetable garden is to lay mulch over top of the soil. Mulching flower and vegetable beds reduces the amount water used to keep the soil beneath the soil moist. mulch reduces the amount of weeds that may potentially grow in your vegetable garden. Pests also resist infestation in a bed where mulch is present. On top of all of the time sent in your vegetable garden, mulch also makes the garden more visually appealing. Mulch prevents dirt from splashing up onto your flowers and vegetables, which also helps the appearance of your garden. The first thing to consider when choosing to lay mulch in your vegetable garden would be the amount of money it will cost you to lay the mulch. Mulch is usually sold by the cubic yard. This measurement of mulch usually confuses most gardeners. Simply measure the area you desire to mulch, multiply length by width of the mulch bed. Then, decide how deep in inches you would like the mulch to be. Lastly, multiply the area of the desired mulch area by the depth you desire and divide by 324. This answer will give you the amount, in cubic yards, of mulch you need for your vegetable garden. There are two main types of mulch to consider, inorganic mulch and organic mulch. When deciding on which type to use for your vegetable garden, one should choose to use organic mulch. Organic mulch is mulch that used to be living material. Mulches that are considered to be organic include grass clippings, pine needles, leaves, and bark. Organic mulch benefits a vegetable garden by providing the soil much- needed nutrients. The nutrients from mulch seeps into the soil as it decomposes. Organic mulch also promotes earthworm activity beneath the soil. These benefits alone are enough to encourage one to use organic mulch. Although all things have their drawbacks, organic mulch encourages rodent infestation so should not be used in an area with rodent problems. In moist climates, organic mulch may hold too much moisture in the soil. This type of mulch in a much to moist climate could encourage slugs and snails to infest the vegetable garden and can also cause the roots of the vegetables touching the mulchto rot. After deciding to use organic mulch, one must decide which kind they are going to use. There are a lot of different kinds of organic mulches on the market. For gardening purposes, most people choose to use compost mulch; it is the best as determined by the agriculture extension office across the country. Compost mulch allows for the most water to seep through into the soil of your vegetable garden. PH is not affected by the use of compost mulch, which increases the fertility of the soil. To increase weed control in the soil, one should lay leaves, glass clippings, or straw over the top layer of mulch. Other types of mulch used in vegetable gardens include newspaper and cardboard mulch, leaves and grass clipping mulch, straw and hay mulch, and wood chips or shredded bark mulch. All have their pros and cons and all should be considered when choosing which to lie atop your vegetable garden soil. Now after deciding how much, which type of organic or inorganic mulch you are going to purchase for your vegetable garden, one must determine when to lay the mulch down. The earlier in the season you decide to lay the mulch, the better. Laying mulch earlier in the season will save time later and increase the vegetable garden’s yield. Ideally, mulch should be laid down after seeds have germinated. Also, check the temperature of your soil; it should be warmed through in order to help the plants that thrive the warm, moist soil. Depending on the density of the mulch, one should lay two to six inches of mulch over topsoil in the vegetable garden. Vegetable garden can thrive and really be a great feature in anyone’s yard. Depending on the kinds of vegetables and environment, a vegetable garden can be very low-maintenance with the proper application of organic mulch. Choosing to lay an organic mulch over-top of your vegetable garden will allow for less work throughout the growing season. Simply following the previous steps and considering all factors of the growing area will allow for a prosperous and low-maintenance vegetable garden. Call 1-800-MULCH-PRO and get connected with a mulch professional that services your local area. 1- 800-MULCH-PRO is a network of the most elite and reputable landscape supply companies in the country. You can also visit us online for mulch at www.1800mulchpro.com for more information.