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Green Patch: 2 Basic Types of Mulch

By Tina Marie Wilcox
June/July 2010
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1. Plant-based: Straw, pine needles, cottonseed hulls, tree bark, shredded tree leaves

Best for: All gardens

Don’t forget: Sprinkle a nitrogen source, such as agricultural cornmeal, on the surface before mulching so that the mulch doesn’t rob the soil of the nutrient as it breaks down.

2. Mineral-based: Coarse sand, greensand, ground granite, lava rock, oyster shells

Best for: Mediterranean natives such as rosemary, sage, thyme and winter savory

Don’t forget: Add more of this type of mulch after a heavy rain and during the winter.

Tina Marie Wilcox has been the head herb gardener at the Ozark Folk Center State Park in Mountain View, Arkansas, since 1984. She also writes Yarb Tales, a weekly column for the Ozark Folk Center ( ). 

Click here for the main article,  Green Patch: Mulching Tips .

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