Oh what a difference mulch makes! We've all been indoctrinated in recent decades to value mulch for its ability to disappoint weeds and to keep the soil moisture where it's needed around the plant roots, but today I looked back on a couple of hours of mulching (after a lot of planting) and the thing that really hit me was how much better a garden looks with a fresh layer of mulch. It hides all sorts of blemishes. And down at the landscape supply place it's clear that there's a couple of dozen different mulches to choose from. It actually took me a while to decide, too.
|In the foreground, a fresh layer of fine|
pine bark mulch around the purple patch
of lavenders and tibouchinas. Much better
looking than plain, dark brown earth. In the
background, the succulents' pebbly cover.
|This is just my excuse to run another photo of my pebbly|
little succulent patch. All seems well here, in fact I am
sure some of them are showing signs of growth already.
I think I've got off track in this post... where was I? Oh that's right, mulch! Without me thinking about this fact too consciously, it has worked out that a key part of the design for this little backyard makeover is that it's the mulch which defines the various beds. Pebbles for succulents, straw for food plants, and the foliage-only and flowering plants are mulched with fine pine bark. Works for me.