Mastering Mulching: A Guide to Nourishing Trees


Mulch isn’t just a cosmetic addition to your garden; it’s a nourishing blanket that can significantly impact the health and vitality of your trees. Understanding the ins and outs of proper mulching can transform your trees into flourishing, resilient beauties. Here’s a comprehensive guide to mulching trees effectively.

The Essence of Mulch

Mulch serves as a protective layer around the base of trees, offering a myriad of benefits:

  • Moisture Retention: Reducing water evaporation, mulch keeps the soil consistently moist, especially crucial during dry spells.
  • Weed Suppression: By smothering weeds, mulch minimizes competition for nutrients and water, allowing trees to thrive.
  • Temperature Regulation: Insulating the soil, mulch moderates temperature fluctuations, safeguarding tree roots from extreme heat or cold.

Choosing the Right Mulch

When it comes to selecting mulch, opt for organic materials like:

  • Wood Chips: Available in various sizes, they slowly decompose, enriching the soil with nutrients.
  • Bark Mulch: Resilient and attractive, bark mulch is an excellent choice for aesthetics and functionality.
  • Leaves or Compost: Shredded leaves or compost make for fantastic mulch, providing nutrients as they break down.

Mulching Techniques

  1. Prepare the Area: Clear the ground around the tree, removing weeds and creating a space free from grass and debris.
  2. Apply Mulch: Spread the mulch in a donut-shaped ring around the tree, starting a few inches away from the trunk and extending out to the tree’s dripline. Aim for a thickness of 2-4 inches.
  3. Avoid Volcano Mulching: Never mound mulch against the tree trunk, creating a “volcano.” This can lead to moisture retention against the bark, inviting pests and diseases.
  4. Maintain Proper Distance: Keep the mulch a few inches away from the trunk to prevent issues like rot or pest infestation.

Mulching Tips

  • Renew Mulch Periodically: Over time, mulch decomposes. Replenish it as needed to maintain the desired thickness.
  • Monitor Moisture Levels: Check soil moisture periodically. Mulch helps retain moisture, but ensure it doesn’t result in waterlogging.
  • Avoid Over-Mulching: More mulch doesn’t mean better; excess mulch can suffocate tree roots and cause problems.


Mulching trees isn’t just about aesthetics—it’s a nurturing practice that fosters their well-being and longevity. By mastering the art of mulching, you become a steward of healthy, resilient trees, enriching your environment and contributing to the beauty of nature.

Embrace the transformative power of mulch. Embrace the vitality it brings to your trees. Embrace mulching as a gesture of care for the silent giants that grace our world.

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Areas We Serve

· Blacklick

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· Lewis Center

· New Albany

· Powell

Common Questions

Are you insured and bonded?
Yes, we carry a two million dollar insurance policy to cover our operations. We also carry a worker's compensation policy to make sure that our staff is protected.
Why is it important to prune trees?

Pruning trees in an urban environment is crucial to the future health of the tree. Proper pruning can greatly increase the longevity of the tree, reduce the amount of deadwood that the tree produces, provide necessary clearances from utilities & structures, and provide the opportunity for the arborist to perform a thorough inspection of the tree. It is extremely important that proper pruning practices are used to avoid causing severe damage to the tree.

Do you offer free quotes?

Yes, we do offer free quotes. An appointment can be scheduled for a certified arborist to take a look at your project. If preferred, a certified arborist can look at the project without an appointment and provide a quote over email. 

Do I need to be home when a quote is given?

We generally try to set up an appointment to provide a free quote. It allows us to go over detailed perimeters of the scope of work & address concerns. If unable to set an appointment, a certified arborist can look at the project & provide a free quote via email.

What is a certified arborist?

A certified arborist is somebody that has gone through documented training & passed an exam that demonstrates proof of knowledge. It is highly recommended that all tree projects have a certified arborist involved to avoid causing irreparable damage to your trees.

What does a tree project cost?

The cost of a tree project can vary greatly. Many factors are considered while putting a monetary value on a project such as: targets that can be damaged, hazards that will need to be mitigated & the amount of time that the work will take to be completed. A core value of Duffey Tree Care is to provide you with an exceptional service while also offering competitive pricing. 

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