By: Shelby McCullough| Published: October 31, 2022
Caring for new trees can be challenging in a hot state like Florida. New trees require plenty of water and fertilizer, but other essential factors to raising healthy trees exist.
New tree mulch is one of the best organic additives to fortify your tree’s growth. Organic mulches are crucial for healthy tree growth with various benefits, from moisture retainment to weed defense.
Everything to Know About Tree Mulch
The Challenges of Nurturing New Trees
Hot temperatures and harsh sunlight are the main challenges for new trees in Florida. Long hours of sunlight mean your yard’s soil is more susceptible to evaporation and dehydration.
Attempts to quell evaporation by adding more water might not be significant enough. Your soil and trees may require a mulch layer a few inches deep to help retain moisture.
The Benefits of Mulching Your New Trees
Beyond moisture retainment, new tree mulch has many benefits, making this organic matter an essential part of nurturing young trees. First, mulch creates a buffer between the tree root and outdoor temperatures. As such, it helps keep soil temperatures consistent during extreme heat and cold.
Mulch also protects against weed growth. New trees require all the nutrients and water they can get to develop robust root systems. However, weeds compete with trees for this water and nutrients; mulch reduces weed growth by about 45%.
Additionally, mulch protects your soil from compaction and your tree’s roots from lawn mower damage. Adding wood chips to the perimeter of your tree is the best way to nourish and fortify your sapling.
How to Add Mulch to Your New Trees
Adding new tree mulch is essential. However, it’s crucial to understand how to add this organic matter to your tree’s environment.
While many homeowners believe it’s as easy as sprinkling mulch around the tree’s perimeter, this is inaccurate. Haphazardly placed mulch causes problems like early rotting.
To most effectively mulch your new trees, follow this process:
1. Create a three to ten-foot circular perimeter around your tree.
2. Remove any grass or other organic matter in this area to expose the soil.
3. Add different mulches, depending on your soil type, creating a two to four-inch layer.
4. Keep two to three inches of space between the mulch and the trunk of your tree. Mulch touching your tree promotes rotting.
What Kinds of Mulch to Add
Different kinds of mulch provide other benefits to your new tree. Thus, it’s important to utilize various types.
For example, use fine or very fine mulch within the first few inches of soil to aid water and moisture retention. Directly on top of the soil, use a medium-texture mulch that allows water to filter through and protects against evaporation. Finally, add a one-inch layer of coarse mulch to protect against weed growth.