Step by Step - Landscaping with Mulch

You've done all the hard landscaping work of early spring, cleaning out the planting beds and waking up your lawn. Now it's time mulch.

Before you apply the mulch... Follow the steps below and you will acheive great results.

  1. Kill Weeds - it is a good idea to spray all weeds with a weed killer 1 to 2 weeks prior to mulching. This will allow time for the weeds to completely die.
  2. Trim Trees and Bushes - it is recommended that you trim your trees and bushes prior to mulching because of the debris it produces.
  3. Clean Out Your Flower Beds - rake out all dead leaves, weeds and trimmings.
  4. Cultivate - cultivate any compacted soil or mulch with a roto-tiller or hand cultivator. Cultivating or loosening the covering will allow moisture and air to pass through the mulch easier reducing the chance for fungus to grow.
  5. Edge Your Beds - creating a clean edge using an edging shovel or power edger really enhances your landscape and gives it a professional look. SUGGESTION: Try using your garden hose as a guide to create nice flowing curves.
  6. Rake Smooth - using a stiff rake to smooth out all the beds to be mulched to avoid lumpiness.
  7. Apply a Pre-Emergent - to prevent germination of weed seeds apply a pre-emergent. After the mulch has been installed, a second application can add protection from weed seeds that may germinate in the mulch.
  8. Time To Mulch- For large areas, buying mulch in bulk and having it delivered to your house makes the most sense. This method will require a wheelbarrow and shovel. Using either your hands or a rake, apply new mulch over the existing cultivated mulch or soil to a total of 4 inches thick.
  9. Water - when complete, moisturize the mulch with water to settle it into place. NOTE: If you are using one of our color enriched mulches, wait a minimum of 24-48 hours before you water. If rained on or irrigated sooner than that, the colorant will not have the proper drying time to bind with the mulch and result in the color washing off.
  10. Maintenance - in a month or so, check your mulch for compaction. If compacted, loosen it using either a garden claw or cultivator. This not only restores the appearance, it will allow water and air to pass which helps prevent the growth of fungus.
  11. Fungus - if present, remove it with the surrounding mulch. Rake existing mulch to cover the area, and then water thoroughly. NOTE: Fungus is a sure sign that your mulch has compacted and your beds have dehydrated, cultivation and watering may be necessary.