Does Mulch Attract Bugs?
It’s been our experience that mulch itself does not attract bugs, but may provide a home for those already living in your garden. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing, as the majority of insects in a landscape are actually healthy for the plant material.
A layer of mulch is important for retaining moisture and those little critters will aid in the decomposition of materials that add nutrients to the soil. Something to avoid, however, is an overabundance of mulch (4 inches+). As this can retain too much moisture and potentially harm to your plants via fungus and mold.
Worms, Centipedes and earwigs are examples of insects that take up residence under mulch. These little guys help the soil by adding nutrients as they eat. What about Termites? If termites are present under mulch, it’s usually because they were already there, as they not normally attracted the mulch itself.
Very interesting example of mulch being spread by aircraft, in a “clearing-fire” zone. This done to apparently prevent erosion. Read more here
Is there such a thing as too much Mulch? You bet there is! Be careful not to overdo mulch coverage, for the livelihood of your plant material. It helps to keep heavy mulch away from the bases of trees, the tops of flowers and shrubs as well.
Here is a comprehensive Mulch calculator that will determine how much mulch a project will require.
1. Apply a Pre-emergent Herbicide : A quality pre-emergent applied prior to ground cover will help nip those weeds in the bud. Be sure to read directions carefully.
2. Layout Weed Fabric : A good barrier against weed seeds already existing in the soil. Simply cut holes for your new plants.
3. Remove Weeds in Just Purchased Plants : Weeds love to grow in the pots of growing nursery plants, and often lay in wait for their new home.
4. Install Quality Mulch : A good 2″-3″ layer of quality mulch will help to keep weed seeds from germinating. Not to mention help control both soil temperature and moisture.
5. Don’t Till too Often : Stirring up the soil can expose dormant seeds to sunlight, and soon they’ll be singing in the rain!