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Decide Whether to Use Pine Straw or Bark Mulch

Mulching is an integral part of doing organic gardening as it provides insulation, nutrients and helping the soil to keep its moisture for plants to survive. Creating a plan on how you should mulch plants in spring and fall can add nutrients and decompose back to the soil that benefits the plant to live.

Technically, organic mulch is any form of organic material that’s placed on the surface of the soil including leaves, tree bark, straw or pine needles that is intended to prevent sudden temperature changes to soil, suppress weed growth, avoid moisture to evaporate and add organic matter back to the soil which helps in improving its structure even further.

As a matter of fact, bark mulch and pine straw are the most used forms of mulch when doing organic gardening. Needless to say each option carries unique characteristics and to give you an example, bark mulch is a byproduct from trees that are sent to sawmill cut into lumber while pine straw originates from a sustainable resource from pine trees when shedding needles late fall.

There are other benefits for using bark mulch aside from what’s said like it protects the plant root system from unexpected changes in temperature, retain moisture and prevent moisture from evaporating, perfect for improving soil structure as this breaks down into organic matter, lowering the pH level of the soil, helps to prevent erosion, available in different colors, best when it’s applied in spring and fall, can float with heavy rains and has a year of lifespan.

Pine straw mulch of course has its own secrets, it can protect root systems of the plant from changes in the temperature like from hot to cold and vice versa, it’s best partnered with organic material for soil modification, has a slightly lower pH level that’s more acidic than bark mulch, helps in preventing soil erosion and also, it’s more economical compared to bark mulch with a lifespan of roughly 6 months.

Basically, pine straw is a natural organic mulch which is also easier to disperse and also, lighter to handle compared to bags of bark mulch. So when the pine straw is set in place, it does not compact compared to other mulches that you can buy in the market nowadays, allowing it to deliver better airflow to the soil, keep moisture in itself and water infiltration that benefits the soil to soak nutrients a lot better.

Basically, the answer whether to use pine straw or bark mulch lies to personal preferences as each option is best in their own rights.

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