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Mulch is a material that is spread on the ground or around or over the plant which:
- insulates or enriches the soil without allowing it to decay
- to conserve moisture
- to improve the fertility and health of the soil
- to enhance the visual appeal of the area
Mulch may reduce the weed growth by excluding light. Mulch may be organic or inorganic. It can be a permanent one or temporary one. Biodegradable mulch can break down into rich, loose soil without preparation, but this may take time. Mulch when applied in the winter/early spring will slow the warming of the soil and act as a insulator and will hold moisture by preventing evaporation. Mulch when applied in peak soil temperature like mid-summer will maintain the soil temperature till the autumn (fall).
Mulch reduces the reach of sunlight inside the soil and hence reducing the evaporation. Mulch absorbs the rainfall but loses it quickly during the exposure to sunlight. Good option to lay mulch down is based on how you want the soil to be during planting. If laid in the summer it absorbs head and does not allow the weed to get affected by sunlight. If laid during rainfall it absorbs some water and keeps the soil with moisture, after the rainfall is over when the sunlight hits the mulch it gets dried out but still does not allow the weed to get affected.
Types of Mulch: