Green Impressions Outdoor Living

By Joe Schill • May 8, 2018

Don’t Let Volcano Mulch Degrade the Health of Your Lawn

Volcano mulch is a lawn care method favored for its quick and attractive results. But what many people fail to realize is the damaging effects of this mulching method. In fact, volcano mulch can actually cause trees to rot, decay and eventually die.

So what about this approach causes such a reaction? Let’s have a look…

How Volcano Mulching Impacts Your Lawn

Mulching is supposed to protect trees from weed overgrowth, extreme soil warming, evaporation of moisture and other things that could affect their health. But when mulch is piled high around the base of a tree—otherwise known as a volcano mulch—it ultimately collects moisture that can rot parts of the tree.

 

volcano-mulch-example

(Source: Pinterest)

As the tree begins to rot, other parts of it grow weaker. This creates a habitat where insects and disease thrive and are able to slowly kill the plant.

Volcano mulching can also prevent water and air from reaching the tree’s roots. This void robs the tree of energy it needs to remain stable in its environment. So during a storm, for instance, there’s a greater chance that these weakened trees will feel the impact of the weather and potentially fall.

How To Mulch the Proper Way

Rather than piling mulch around trees, the better approach is to leave their base exposed. In fact, mulch should be pushed out 3 inches from the tree trunk and placed in the shape of a donut, with the trunk at the center.

What this does is allow the plant to breathe. Moisture can escape as needed from the tree, while energy can be captured by its roots for continued growth and support.

While on the topic of proper mulching, it’s also important to consider the materials at work. Take organic mulches like wood chips and bark mulch, for instance. These options are far superior in terms of suppressing weeds, moderating soil temperatures and preserving soil moisture. What’s more: As the organic mulch starts to decay, it contributes to the underlying soil’s organic content.

The Importance of Mulching in Landscape Maintenance

Every homeowner and property manager wants a landscape where trees thrive throughout every season. The proper mulching techniques can make a world of difference in achieving this goal.

Here at Green Impressions, we make proper mulching a priority in our landscape maintenance. When combined with our other services, every part of your outdoor space is sure to make a good impression. For more details, request a free lawn care consultation today.

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