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Saturday, June 28, 2014
Cedar, redwood mulches work better than pine
By BOB MORRIS SPECIAL TO VIEW
Question: Would you please tell me what type of mulch is not recommended to put in flower beds? I thought I remembered it being redwood mulch, but I can’t find anything on that. Could it have been cedar? My landscape guy says the shredded cedar is not a problem for vegetation.
Actually, either one will work fine. Redwood and cedar mulches don’t decompose as quickly as pine, and they are usually prettier.
Both cedar and redwood have phenols that help the wood resist decay by fungi and bacteria. There doesn’t seem to be a problem for bedding plants.
My preference is a variety of mixed woods, but they do break down fairly quickly (two to three years) and must be replaced.
Many homeowners like the look of redwood and cedar mulches. They don’t break down as fast, and so they last longer in the landscape. They may be more expensive initially, but they don’t need to be replaced as often as pine mulches.
Bob Morris is a horticulture expert living in Las Vegas and professor emeritus for the University of Nevada. Visit his blog at xtremehorticulture.blogspot.com.