Photographs of the Palouse from Above
17 hours ago
I was literally flooded with responses this month. Wow! Mulching must be a very hot topic, and here I was anticipating only a handful of entries.
I've taken some time to analyze the data, and the results for the #1 question on whether to taper the mulch or to pile it evenly around perennials worked out this way:
• 85% — spread mulch evenly over the bed
• 7% — doesn't matter, or depends on the particular plant
• 8% — taper the mulch or rotting may be a problem
BENEFITS of mulching you mentioned included: reduced watering, because the mulch holds the moisture in the soil; cooler roots during summer heat; greatly reduced weed seed germination (figures in the 80% fewer weeds were mentioned a few times); mulches add beneficial organic matter; mulches encourage plenty of soil microbes, worms and other beneficial critters; mulch looks aesthetically pleasing.
The most important thing you reported over and over again is that mulching seems to make your perennials grow better!