Are you interested in mulching around your yard and garden, but don’t know what the BEST Mulch is for your specific need?
Are you interested in learning more about types of mulch and how to use them?
After hours of research, I have created the article, 10 BEST Mulch for Gardening. This list is sorted by the most expensive to least expensive mulch.
And scroll down to the bottom of this article to find answers to the 4 Most Frequently Asked Questions about Garden Mulch!
10 BEST Garden Mulch
- Cedar Mulch
- Long-lasting color all year
- Prevents weed all year and retains moisture
Scotts Growing Media Mulch is the best product on the market when it comes to mulching around trees, shrubs, flowers, and vegetables.
This product should be used after seeds have germinated and a thick 3 inches of application will prevent weeds all year long. Not only this, but it will help retain moisture during those hot and dry summer days.
Best of all is that this mulch comes with Scotts’ patented Color Guard that allows your mulch to keep its color for over a year!
If you want the best mulch that doesn’t have to replaced constantly then look any further!
- Cocoa Shells
- Admits and retains water
- Each package contains only a small amount of mulch
The National Cocoa Shell Mulch is made of the outside shell of the cocoa bean and is the perfect accent to a garden or flowerbed.
This mulch comes with an attractive brown color that will not bleach out.
This mulch is perfect for admitting and retaining water. What separates this type of mulch though is that it will never become soggy.
This mulch comes in 2 cu. feet and is a great organic option for preventing weeds while adding nutrients into your garden.
- Processed Straw
- Effective at absorbing and retaining water
- 99% weed preventative
- Protects seeds against wind and water
- Not as colorful as other mulches
- Best used for just seeds
The EZ-Straw Mulch is made of organic processed straw that is held together with a natural and biodegradable bonding agent.
This bonding agent makes this mulch perfect for protecting grass seed from heavy winds and washout.
The EZ-Straw Mulch is twice cut making it easy for application, prevents 99% of weeds, and requires less watering and work than competitors.
Best of all is that it is pet and kid-friendly and can be stored inside or outside without degrading.
- Coco Coir Chips
- Prevents fungus
- Can be used in hydroponic and traditional gardening
- Can be used with tropical plants
- Expensive for a small amount
Hydrofarm is a great mulch that uses organic coco coir planting chips that are great indoors for tropicals or outdoors as mulch
Hydrofarm mulch can be used as a decorative ground cover, hydroponic medium, or as an aggregate for soil applications.
Not only this, but it does an unbelievable job of retaining water and even better at preventing fungus.
Best of all it is easy to store, carry, and use!
- Coconut Husk
- Can be used on sloped terrain
- Expensive for a little amount of mulch
FibreDust CoCo Mulch contains 100% organic coconut husk and no additives.
1 block contains 2 cubic feet of mulch after hydrated with 4 gallons of water.
Not only this, but it comes in a “rust” color that fits perfectly in any outdoor or indoor garden setting.
What sets this type of mulch apart though is that it can be used for three straight years without needing to be replaced.
And unlike other mulch, it can be used on slope terrain without deteriorating.
Best of all is that it is pet-friendly and will not attract pests or insects.
- Red Cedar Chips
- Great for hanging baskets
- Limited use compared to competitors
Wood Smith produces some of the finest natural cedar wood chips for both indoor and outdoor plants that helps to keep moisture in!
This mulch is made in the USA, provides a natural scent, and can even be used in animal litter and bedding. And each package is made with approximately 5 quarts of wood chips.
And if you have hanging baskets then this is the only type of mulch you should use!
- Processed Straw
- Over 100 uses
- Not as water absorbant as competitors
EZ Just Straw is 100% organic straw that has over 100 uses. Not only can you use it for mulching, but you can use it for nest material, pet bedding, and crafts.
And what sets this mulch apart is that it can be re-used!
Not only this, but it is safe and convenient for children and pets.
This bag is also UV and bug protected and no assembly is required!
- Organic Wood Chips
- Last years
- Reasonably Priced
- Prevents root rot and soil compaction
- Less beneficial for outdoor plants
If you are looking to cover your indoor plants with mulch then look no further than Window Garden Fiber Organic Mulch.
This mulch comes in a beautiful cinnamon color, looks amazing, and will last years!
Using this mulch will help prevent splash, keeps your soil in its containers, and reduces soil compaction and root rot.
Layer this mulch to help reduce evaporation, decrease the number of times you have to water, and prevent weeds and mold.
- Coconut Husk
- reasonably priced
- not as great as competitors for outdoor plants
SpongeEase Coco Fiber Mulch is made of crushed coconut husks that is organic and a beautiful way to protect your plants.
This mulch is an excellent way to organically absorb and retain water and prevent weeds for pots and containers.
What separates this mulch apart from its competitors is that it doesn’t break down, can last two years, and has an attractive look that will make all your neighbors jealous!
#10. Mosser Spanish Moss
- Spanish Moss
- Natural way to mulch that effectively retains water
- Not as long-lasting as competitors
Mosser Spanish Moss is a unique way to mulch and provide nutrients to your plants!
This is a great mulch to cover soil, helps plants retain water, assist in preventing weed growth, and does not interfere with renewable.
Not only this, but it is a great way to decorate ornamentals, baskets, dish gardens, flower pots, or any other artificial arrangements.
Best of all is that it comes available in 250 cu. inches!
4 Frequently Asked Questions
#1. How Do I Apply Mulch?
Applying mulch to your garden can be a great way to promote healthy growth, but if not done appropriately it can also stunt your garden’s productivity.
When applying mulch to your garden you should:
- First, weed the soil where you will be applying mulch
- Next, lay down approximately 6 inches worth of thickness of newspaper. This will prevent excess light that can potentially promote weed growth.
- Next, apply 4 to 6 inches of mulch around your plants to discourage weeds, retain moisture, and
#2. What are the Different Types of Garden Mulch?
There are two different types of mulch you can purchase for your garden. You can buy organic mulch which will provide benefits to your garden and inorganic that typically lasts longer.
Below, are the types of organic mulch you should use for your garden:
Compost is made of organic kitchen and yard waste. Using compost will not only protect your garden from weeds but provide nutrients over a long period of time.
When using compost it is recommended that you reapply it yearly to provide the greatest benefit to your plants and garden.
B) Wood Chips
Wood Chips are the most common organic material used for garden mulch.
This type of mulch comes in numerous types of colors and varieties.
It is another type of mulch that provides great nutrition to your garden and plants as it breaks down. It should be replenished yearly though.
C) Straw (Hay)
Straw is an organic material that is clean, light, and easily decomposes.
Straw is a great way to immediately add nutrients to your garden. Typically, you will need to replace straw monthly or add an extra few inches of layering if you want it to last longer.
Best of all, you should use straw if you want to mulch your garden, but also protect your seeds from wind and rain.
D) Pine Needles
If you are interested in a mulch that breaks down slower and increases the acidity of your garden then you should use pine needles.
Pine Needles are a great way to add nutrients into your garden and will not wash away during a wind or heavy rain.
Leaves are the best type of organic material if you are making mulch yourself.
This type of mulch is easy to accumulate, decomposes faster than most other organic materials, and replenishes nutrients into your garden.
Below, are the different types of inorganic material you can use to mulch your garden:
A) Black Plastic
Black Plastic is one of the best ways to mulch your garden to prevent weeds.
When using black plastic you will need to monitor its durability as the sun can quickly break it down.
In addition, black plastic can retain heat in your garden but should be monitored because if it gets too hot it can destroy the roots of your plants.
A newspaper is another great way to mulch your garden.
It is recommended to wet down your newspaper before placing it on the soil.
While newspaper will need to be replaced after one season, it does allow for plants to penetrate through it for greater access to sunlight and pollinators.
C). Landscape Fabric
Landscape Fabric is a great type of inorganic material that can be used to prevent weeds when mulching.
This is a great type of material that can be placed under rocks or gravel and can help prevent stones from sinking into the ground.
#3. What Factors Should I Consider When Buying Garden Mulch?
When buying garden mulch there are several factors you should consider in your purchase:
- Decide whether you want organic or inorganic material. I recommend first layering your soil with inorganic material and then adding a layer of organic material
- Decide how you want to use your mulch. Is it to protect seeds? Retain water? Or prevent weeds?
- Decide how much you need and how much time you want to replace it every year.
- Decide what nutrients are needed for your garden
- Decided whether you will be using it for indoors or outdoors plants
- Look for non-toxic mulch options if you have children or pets
#4. Why Mulch Your Garden?
There are numerous reasons for mulching your garden. You want to mulch your garden for the following reasons:
- moisture retention
- increase soil heat
- Weed prevention
- Improve garden appearance
- Attract beneficial insects and prevent detrimental insects and pests
- Decrease fungus growth
- Decrease maintenance cost
- Increase the likelihood of seed germination
As I have talked about above, there is an art and science to mulching.
While it is not hard, it does take time to understand how to most effectively use it for different plants.
As a reminder…
- Mulching is beneficial for every plant. Make sure you read the instructions above to apply your mulch properly to your garden.
- There are numerous reasons to mulch your garden. Some reasons include weed prevention, water retention, improve garden appearance, and so much more.
- There are three types of fertilizer; Granular, Liquid, and Spikes. Each one meets the different needs of a gardener and you may have to use all three.
- I recommend using one of the 10 BEST Mulch for Garden, based specifically on what the type of plant you will be growing.