April is the ideal time to mulch with organic compost as the soil is moist and accessible, and there are some spots that will benefit more than others.
Applying compost is easy – simply lay 5cm of your chosen mulch onto the bed or around key plants without smothering or damaging the lower stems. This will lock moisture into the soil while acting as a physical barrier, blocking out drying winds and direct sun. Organic mulches also contain nutrients in varying degrees, acting as slow-release plant food, and help to improve soil structure, making it more moisture retentive, free-draining and fertile.
Organic mulches to try include, leaf mould, well-rotted horse manure, mushroom compost, garden compost and composted woodchips.
Discover four spots to apply mulch with organic compost, to smother weeds and feed plants, below.
Around spring bulbs
Mulching around spring bulbs as they die back will feed the bulbs and lock in moisture just when they need it. Mulching will also reduce the need for digging, which can easily lead to bulb damage.
Apart from regular clipping, hedges are often ignored. Their roots are packed together, and benefit from an annual mulch to lock in moisture and feed the plants. Make sure the soil is moist or water well before mulching.
Around herbaceous perennials
Dark organic mulch visually sets off herbaceous perennials. If you’ve just divided and watered them, then mulching the new plants will give them a boost as the growing season gets going.
Around fruit trees and bushes
Fruit trees and bushes like plenty of moisture around their roots, especially when fruit is forming. A regular mulch will suppress weeds and help keep the plants healthy and resistant to pests and diseases.