Is It OK to Put Cypress Mulch on a Vegetable Garden?

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Mulch retains soil moisture, reduces soil erosion and controls weeds. The different types of organic mulches have different characteristics that benefit the vegetable garden. While any type of bark mulch can be used in a vegetable garden, some considerations should be taken into account when choosing cypress mulch.

Negatives

  • While cypress mulch can hold a lot of water, it is difficult to get wet, especially if it is not on flat ground. The water tends to run off the surface of the mulch. Thus, more water may be required to adequately get moisture to the plant roots. If you live in an area with tight water-use restrictions, cypress mulch is not the best choice. You initially need more water than usual to penetrate the mulch.

Positives

  • Cypress mulch takes a long time to decompose compared to other bark mulches, meaning you do not have to reapply the mulch as often. It also has a rich brown color that makes it desirable for those concerned about garden aesthetics. Because cypress mulch holds a lot of water, there is less likelihood of evaporation of the water from the garden bed surface, as long as the mulch was thoroughly soaked from the beginning.

Expense

  • Cypress mulch tends to be more expensive than other mulches. If cost is a consideration when planning your vegetable garden, then another type of bark mulch is preferable. This may be due to the regional availability of cypress trees. Cypress trees grow in wetlands and typically come from the southern United States. Other types of mulch, such as pine bark or hardwood, are less expensive due to local availability and the lack of transportation costs.

Environmental Considerations

  • Cypress trees are cut down to produce cypress mulch. Unfortunately, trees are being cut down faster than they can be replaced. Cypress trees are an important component of the wetland ecosystem. Loss of cypress tress leads to the loss of a major ecosystem, as they provide shelter to wetland wildlife. They also provide food to wetland species.

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References

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