Saturday, March 2, 2013

Yuruga Nursery » Mulching Your Native Plants

Great article on composting in Tropics!

One of the secrets of successful native gardening is the lavish use of organic mulch…
In our hot tropical monsoonal climate with a long dry season every year, any measure that reduces the need for watering and saves on water bills is surely commonsense.
Bare ground heats up very easily under the relentless tropical sun. Roots can’t grow in baking hot soil. Therefore in North Queensland it is essential to cover the ground with a thick insulating blanket of mulch to keep the soil temperature cool enough for the roots of newly planted plants to grow.
DON’T EVER USE BLACK PLASTIC TO COVER YOUR SOIL. Sure, it will smoother out weeds, but, being black, it absorbs heat and makes the soil too hot. The roots will cook underneath it. Furthermore, soil needs oxygen otherwise it becomes sour, and black plastic cuts off the air supply. Black plastic is popular in cold climates where the ground needs to be kept warm, but is totally unsuitable for the tropics.

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