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Mulching for Houseplants

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Mulching is a must for many outdoor plants, from trees to vegetables, to grow properly. As mulch — which may be made from materials like grass clippings, sawdust and pine needles — decomposes, it releases a wealth of nutrients into the soil. Mulch also protects roots from the sun and promotes water retention. Indoor plants can benefit from a layer of mulch in much the same way.

The Appeal of Mulch

Mulching is a simple, easy way to make plants look great while keeping them healthy. Curious pets can be kept at bay by covering houseplant soil with mulch, which serves as a protective barrier between paws and dirt. Wilting stems can be propped up by mulch, and it conserves soil moisture. Mulch shields the soil and roots of houseplants placed in bright spots from the sun.

Mulching Materials

Mulches for houseplants, unlike outside mulch, can be made from both natural and artificial substances. Using alternative items for mulch, like marbles, pecan shells or pebbles, is also an easy means of reusing and recycling. Mulches made from heavier materials, like pebbles, won’t blow away if the plant is placed by an open window. Nutrients like nitrogen release into soil as mulches made from natural materials, like a mix of wood chips and leaves, break down, acting as a form of plant food.

Watering

Watering a mulched houseplant requires a few extra steps. When mulch covers the soil, it’s easy to overwater plants. To avoid this problem, move mulch aside for a moment, exposing the soil so you don’t overdo it with the watering can. Make sure plants have proper drainage too. Containers with holes in the bottom allow extra water to run out, so it doesn’t become trapped and result in waterlogged roots. Use indoor pots with drainage holes and saucers underneath.

Avoiding Rot

While mulching has many practical and aesthetic benefits for houseplants, it may cause more harm than good if not done properly. To avoid rot, do not pack mulch high around houseplant stems, particularly in the winter. Layers of mulch for houseplants should be fairly thin, allowing for proper air circulation and preventing plants from becoming overly humid and moist, which allows bacteria to thrive.

Mulching for Houseplants. Mulching is a must for many outdoor plants, from trees to vegetables, to grow properly. As mulch — which may be made from materials like grass clippings, sawdust and pine needles — decomposes, it releases a wealth of nutrients into the soil. Mulch also protects roots from the sun and …

Oak Hill Gardens

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I love mulch. Feels strange to actually type that, but I’m a huge mulch fan. Last summer we planted a mini orchard then gave the gaps between trees a nice thick layer of mulch. It looks great, and our cats appreciated it too.

We just bought the biggest bags of locally sourced mulch we could fit in the car. But what if you aren’t covering large areas like we did? Maybe you just want a bag to dip into now and then for your potted plants?

In this guide, I’ve put together the top choices available, plus I’ll share some pointers on how to pick the best ones for your plants.

The 5 Best Mulches for Your Potted Plants

Forget about rubber mulch and all those synthetics out there. When picking this list, I deliberately avoided anything from recycled tires, unknown wood sources, or mulches containing harsh chemicals.

Best Mulch for Beginners — EZ-Straw Seeding Mulch

This is the best mulch for beginners. This EZ-Straw Seeding Mulch is an organic product, but it’s processed and packaged to make your experience as easy as possible.

This 2.5 cubic foot bale is cut for easy application. When you open a bag, it just goes on and on and on. It’s much better than buying a bale of ordinary straw. It covers an impressive area of 500 square feet.

Set aside your environmental concerns as this mulch is biodegradable. This means you won’t need to clear it away after the seed establishes, unlike plastic mulch. Just leave it to decompose in the soil.

Tack bonding enhances this product by making the straw stick together, which improves results. It accelerates germination, leads to less watering, and promises 99 percent weed-free plants. The tackifier (bonding agent), which is actually guar gum, also helps to protect grass seed from the wind.

You can easily store this product in its bag outside or inside as it’s made from UV-protected plastic.

What’s the best mulch for your container garden and indoor plants? Find out what you can buy online and have delivered to your doorstep.