Mulch Mulch Mulch
Two to three inches of mulch retains moisture by protecting roots, keeping the ground cool, and adding organic matter to the soil.
Shredded bark, shredded leaves, pine nuggets, and pine straw all make excellent organic mulches.
Mulch just two to three inches high - any thicker is a haven for pests and disease.
When mulching trees, be careful not to pile mulch up around the trunk. Think of a mulch ring like a doughnut, with a round hole in the middle that allows for air circulation and pest protection.
Extend the mulch as far to the dripline as possible to protect delicate surface roots.