To Mulch or NOT to Mulch

When to mulch? Good question! As we head on into the colder months of winter, the big question people often ask is, “To mulch or not to mulch?”  Although I’m sure you can find many varied opinions on this subject, most with a background in horticulture will tell you to MULCH!

When to Mulch in MissouriThis does however come with a small warning…winter mulching needs to be done AFTER there is a heavy frost in the ground.  Mulching has a number of benefits, and most usually only think of those that occur in the summer.  These would be retaining moisture during our dry season and keeping the sun from baking the root systems of our treasured plants.

But what most don’t consider is regulating the soil temps in winter.  Although plants need a dormant season, here in the Midwest, our wildly fluctuating temps can have a detrimental effect on these tender plants.  Mulching after we have a strong frost in the ground helps keep the ground frozen which deters the plants from kicking into their growth mode prematurely. So in short, the answer is…yes!