Benefits of Mulching

So you know it's good to mulch a tree, but do you really know why, or the proper way to do it?  Listed below are the reasons for all that hard work and a diagram of how to properly do the job. You can also visit the Morton Aboretum's website at for additional information.
  • Mulching reduces the loss of soil moisture.
  • The soil structure is improved, making it more like a natural forest soil.
  • Soil compaction and erosion are reduced.
  • It reduces the impact of water droplets hitting the soil surface, thereby, reducing soil crusting. This reduction in crusting increases water penetration into the soil.
  • Competition for water and nutrients from surrounding turf is reduced.
  • The root zone beneath the mulch is kept warmer in winter, cooler in summer, thus reducing root damage.
  • It provides a barrier for the tree against lawnmowers and weed whips.
  • Top growth and root development are increased.
  • The appearance of newly planted trees is improved.
  • The pH of the soil is lowered, aiding the root’s ability to take up nutrients.
  • Long term nutrient availability is increased.
  • Never pile mulch or soil against the trunk of the tree. This promotes decay and the development of trunk encircling  roots, shortening the life of the tree.

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