Can you plant grass seed in the summer? Sure you can, but be prepared to give it lots of attention. The key point to get it to germinate is to keep it moist. First, look for a seed that has a coating to keep it moist longer. Loosen the soil and add compost. Make sure the seed is at least ½-inch deep and tamp it in. Then cover it with hay so it doesn’t dry out. Water it every day and, if it’s warm water several times a day. Use a gentle spray when watering and stop just before it starts to puddle. If it’s very hot (and you’re around) water it every hour for four or five minutes. If you can’t devote that kind of time to the seed wait til Fall, it’s really the best time to seed.
Crushed stone is used in landscape design and gardening. It us used in gardens and park projects for walkways, paths, driveways and as a mulch substitute. Among its’ benefits are erosion control, water conservation, weed suppression and aesthetic appeal. It is also used in rock gardens.
Bark mulch generally refers to mulch that made by shredding the bark of hard or softwood trees. It is the perfect choice for formal perennial beds. It gives that beautiful, uniform look to all your gardens.
Shredded bark mulch is an economical choice. Bark chunks tend to be more expensive. Wood chips can often be found for free but they can include sticks or large wood chunks and fade to a silvery gray that can be unflattering and will need to be replaced more often.
One of the indicators of quality pine mulch is its unique aroma. If you smell something like ammonia it means the mulch was improperly stored. Toxic mulches have a sour vinegar or garbage small, rather than that fresh wood or compost smell. Avoid mulches with that sour smell because they can cause permanent damage to your plants.
The mulch you pick really comes down to aesthetics. You want to choose a color that will complement not only the colors in your home but the colors of your shrubs and flowers. AJT offers a wide array of mulches in different colors. Which color would look best at your home?
Hemlock Mix reddish brown
Red Hemlock red
Pure Black black
Mulch can be organic or inorganic. Organic mulches include any formerly living material such as bark chips, chopped leaves, straw, grass clippings, compost, wood chips, shredded bark, sawdust, pine needles, rice hulls, saw dust, grape pomace and even paper. Inorganic mulches include gravel, stones, black plastic sheeting, rubber chips and geotextiles (landscape fabrics).
Both types of mulch discourage weeds but organic mulch improves the soil as it decomposes. Inorganic mulch doesn’t break down or enrich the soil.
If you want a permanent mulch and do not add plants to the garden every year an inorganic mulch may be a good choice for you. But if you add plants, or even just move them around a black plastic sheet would be a nuisance and rocks would make it very difficult to plant.
- breaks down slowly and adds nutrients to the soil giving you healthier plants
- prevents most weeds from germinating
- reduces the need to water, keeps the soil cool and most
- keeps dirt from splashing on flowers and vegetables
- reduces erosion and helps the soil absorb more rain
- reduces soil-borne diseases caused by splashing rain or irrigation water
- eliminates soil crusting which can make it harder for seeds to germinate and rain to penetrate
- helps roots develop better and extend farther due to improved water retention
There are two times during the year when mulching the garden and flowerbeds is essential. Mulch in late Autumn to provide protection from Winter temperatures and mulch again in Summer to help plants keep in moisture and to help reduce weeds.
In Fall, a variety of things could be used for mulch. We have so many trees that we like to mulch up the leaves and put them in the gardens. Don’t leave them whole, they’ll just get wet and possibly cause disease. Mulched leaves break down easier and provide vital nutrients to the soil. You could also use straw, shredded newspaper, grass clippings, pine needles, wood shavings or chips and old sawdust.
When mulching in Summer I use bark mulch. It gives a uniform look to all the garden beds. There are several types of bark mulch: pure organic hemlock, red hemlock, hemlock mix, pure black or spruce. Which one you choose depends on the color and scent you like.