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Old 12-14-2008, 08:12 PM   #11
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One shouldn't put mulch down until the soil has had a chance to warm up. If you mulch when the soil is still frozen...the mulch keeps it frozen longer. Makes perfect sense to me!
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Old 12-14-2008, 08:15 PM   #12
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OK, I got ya! I hadn't thought of it that way or it would have made perfect sense to me as well! LOL
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Old 12-14-2008, 08:19 PM   #13
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Because if you mulch before the soil has a chance to warm up, you are keeping the soil cold. As soon as it warms up...I pull the mulch off my soil. I want the soil to warm ASAP.

Sorry for the double post...my 'puter is on psychadelic super-funk mode.

Last edited by Prairiefreak; 12-14-2008 at 08:20 PM. Reason: Blah
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Old 12-14-2008, 08:38 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prairiefreak View Post

Sorry for the double post...my 'puter is on psychadelic super-funk mode.
No problem! Way too funny, though! LOL

I haven't worried about taking the mulch off of any of my stuff, really. Mainly because the free stuff you get has already amended itself into the soil by then, unless you have a really thick layer on. Then there's my Canna and EEs that I will leave it on because it helps keep down watering. This is a good things since it already takes me about 3 hours to water everything! LOL
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Old 12-17-2008, 11:46 AM   #15
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Shredded leaves make a nice mulch. THey look just like wood chips. I bet from a distance most people wouldn't be able to distinguish shredded leaves from shredded bark mulch.

Can we post pictures to this forum?

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v4.../annabelle.jpg

That's a pic of some landscaping mulched with shredded leaves.
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Old 12-17-2008, 12:13 PM   #16
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Yes, you can post photos here and you don't need to use a photo hosting service. I just learned how to do it and it's really easy and it automatically converts them into thumbnails.

When you finish typing a post, look down below the box you are typing in and you will see a 'Go Advanced' button. Click on that and what you typed will be saved as you end up at a new page. Now look about your typed text and you will see an expanded tool bar. In the top toolbar row there is a little paperclip. Click on that. From there you get a new window where you can directly upload your photos from where ever you save them on your own computer and you can load three or more into the same post which is nice because it keeps them all together. When you are finished uploading the photos you want, just close the window. The photos will have been added to your post even though you don't see them. If you want to make sure they're there, click on the 'preview post' button below and they will appear. It's really neat. From there all you have to do is 'submit reply' and you're all done.

you can edit your post so if you want to try it, go back to the post directly before this one and click on the 'Go Advanced' tab, remove your link to the photo of your hydrangeas and add your photo. It works!
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Old 12-18-2008, 04:37 AM   #17
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I agree with joepyeweed about the leaves being one of the best free mulches that look natural. I even leave none shredded leaves on the beds over the winter, whatever the wind blows in as long as they aren't matting down too heavily and smothering plants. By the time I rake them off in the late winter, early spring, they are well on their way to decomposing and I just add them to the compost pile.
It always leaves me a little perplexed when neighbors rake off every little leaf on their property under shrubs and trees when it would be a good no work insulator that feeds the soil.

Prairiefreak, I was a little confused when you said not to mulch until June and the soil was warm. As it is just going into winter I'm waiting for the ground to freeze to the depth of a few inches, probably after Christmas for me, to put down my winter mulch. This is to keep the temperature even and remain cool to moderate the fluxuations with the January freezes and thaws. Clearly you were talking of in the spring during the growing season.

I've always collected Xmas trees and cut off the branches for the winter mulch but after finding out how heavily that industry uses pesticides (although a recent article in the NYTimes on this very subject did say there has been a reduction in the use industry wide recently) I'll be using pine needles and leaves this year.
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Old 12-18-2008, 10:20 AM   #18
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I always mulch heavy in the fall. I do not remove the mulch in the spring to warm up the beds. The soil itself is warmer than the air in the winter and its cooler than the air in the summer. I am in no hurry to "warm" it up in the spring.
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Old 12-18-2008, 12:23 PM   #19
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I mulch heavy when ever I plant something. I don't pull it off in spring when it is around a tree or a shrub or a group of plantings.
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Old 12-18-2008, 01:30 PM   #20
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I don't remove the mulch at all, mine is normally pretty well decomposed. If I'm pushing to get early veggies in, I cover the area with black plastic for several days, remove, plant and use row covers or home made hot houses depending on the crop. And use leaves to mulch around those. Helps to hold the warmth.
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