Gardening is a fun and relaxing activity that enables us to enjoy the outdoors, while creating a beautiful yard to enjoy all summer. When you grow flowers from seed, it is always preferable to mulch the flowerbed. The mulch will provide weed control, water retention, and soil insulation that can make growing flowers much easier.
What You Will Need:
- Mulch Materials (Seedless straw, newspaper, leaves, or wood chips)
- Hand cultivator
Initial Considerations: Since flowers are planted in spring, prepare to mulch prior to when you want to plant your garden. It is easier to plant flowers in mulch than it is to have to mulch around flowers. However, if you prefer to plant flowers before mulching, just be cautious not to cover them up in the process.
Step 1: Choose your mulch. If you are looking to save money, consider mulching with leaves. Leaves are organic, rapidly biodegrade, and can help to build up the soil. Woodchips are a good option as well, as they provide a more professional look to the garden. You can also mulch with straw or newspaper. However, make sure it is straw and not hay as hay contains seed heads, which will make your weed problems worse.
Step 2: Figure out how much mulch to use based on the surface area being covered. You will want enough mulch to spread a two to three-inch thick layer. To calculate the mulch required, take the number of square feet of your garden and multiply it by the number of inches of mulch you want to use. Then divide that number by 324 to give you the number of cubic yards of mulch you will need. For instance, if you’re looking to cover 100 square feet of soil with 2 inches of mulch, then the equation would be (100×2=200 and 200/324= .62). Thus, you will need roughly .62 cubic yards of mulch.
Step 3: Prepare the garden bed. Pull any existing weeds from the garden bed and clean the bed as much as possible by removing branches, stones, or leaves. Then till the bed using a hand cultivator. Rake the bed so that all of the soil is smooth.
Step 4: Using your wheelbarrow and shovel, spread the mulch around the flowerbed to a depth of two to three inches.
Step 5: Plant the seeds. Be sure to clear a small space in the mulch for the seeds. You do not want the seeds to be covered by the mulch or they will not get the needed sunlight.