Does Mulch Absorb Water? Or does mulch reduce the frequency you have to water your plants? As a garden owner, landscaper, or someone with plants on your front lawn, these are questions you have asked yourself for quite a while now.
But first, you should be aware of what mulch is.
What Is Mulch?
Mulch is any layer of organic and inorganic material used to cover the top layer of the soil. Organic mulch is the most preferable since, over time, it decays, providing the ground with nutrients, while inorganic mulch acts more as a permanent solution.
Organic mulches include wood chippings, sawdust, compost, paper, barks, straw and leaves, while inorganic mulches include plastics, glass, gravel, polythene or fabrics. The mulch is usually placed around the plant at its base. There are many reasons why mulching is used, one of them being water retention and absorption.
How Does Mulch Absorb Water?
When it rains on the plants you’ve mulched, the water has to go through the mulch before reaching the soil. If you are using organic mulch, the mulch will absorb the water before the ground; thus, the mulch will become moist.
Benefits Of Moist Mulch
- It keeps the soil moist
- It regulates the soil temperature
- Ensures the plant doesn’t wither
- It reduces the frequency you have to water the plants, thus saving you money
Other benefits of mulch include:
Prevention of soil erosion — mulch helps prevent the force of irrigation and water, thus preventing soil erosion, primarily splash and sheet erosion.
Insulates the soil — when mulch is applied to the soil, it insulates the soil by reducing the rate of water evaporation from the soil, thus preventing the soil from drying up.
Enriches the soil — over time, the mulch decays, especially organic mulch, thus adding nutrients into the soil.
Discourages weed growth — for any plant to grow, it requires sunlight. So when you mulch, any plant that grows under the mulch will automatically be suffocated.
Acts as water storage – since mulch absorbs the water like a sponge, it slowly releases the water to the soil, ensuring that both the plant and soil always have access to water.
How To Mulch
If you want to mulch your flower beds, it is recommended that the mulch should be at least 2 inches on top of the soil, while for trees, it should be at least 3 inches high for quality results. However, the quantity of mulch depends on the type of mulch you are using. If you are using organic mulch, you must keep adding it regularly to maintain the required level.
Remember, when applying the mulch, you should ensure that you have thoroughly covered all the roots. It would be best if you didn’t pile mulch against the trunk; the mulch should be in a donut-like shape.
Best Mulch for Water Absorption
The best type of mulch in Orlando for water absorption is organic mulch. Since it acts as a regulator, it absorbs excess water in the soil and air and saves it for when it’s needed. Quality mulch for sale in Orlando can be found in a few select stores.
Most certainly, mulch does absorb water, but it’s for the benefit of the mulched plant. The benefits of mulching are numerous: if you invest in mulch, then you’ve made a wise move.