Mulch or Rock?
When you think of mulch there is a good chance that rock does not come to mind. Rock is a material that can often be used in place of the chopped tree bark we normally think of when we think of mulch.
When you use rock instead of typical mulch you have a greater variety of products to choose from. You can get rock in different sizes, shapes, colors, and textures. You might choose pea gravel or maybe you want to place river rock in the bed for a unique look.
When using rock you do not have to put the same look, or color of rock on each area that you are mulching. You can mix things up a bit.
When you use rock as mulch you typically do not have to replace the mulch like when you use bark mulch. The rains will not wash the rocks out of your flower bed. The rock does not deteriorate or decay. The rock does not decompose. When you buy tree bark mulch you know that in six months to a year you will have to make the purchase again.
When you put down mulch you know that you will have to repeat the process regularly. When you use rock you do not have to repeat the process so often so you spend less time working in the yard and more time enjoying the yard.
When the mulch gets wet and stays wet it creates the perfect condition for many fungi to grow. Rocks dry faster and more completely and the fungi do not have the opportunity to develop and grow. This can mean healthier plants.
Feeds the Earth
When you use mulch, the material will decompose and break-down creating food for the plants it is surrounding. You have to regularly replace the mulch because of this but you are feeding the earth and the plants every time that you do.
Retains More Moisture
When you use mulch, your plants will suffer from drought and thirstless because the mulch helps to retain the moisture. The damp mulch also helps to reduce the temperature so the plants are not burned up during the summer heat.
The layer of mulch that you put down will cover the ground and prevent the weeds that would grow in that area from receiving the sunlight they need. You do less weeding and your plants have less competition for the vitamins and nutrients in the soil.
This means you will also save work because you will not spend as much time pulling weeds or tending to your garden. That would mean less work and more time for fun.
The initial cost of mulch is less than the cost of rock to cover the same square footage. Rock does last longer but you have to decide if you want to pay more over a period of time or pay more from the beginning.