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What to Look for in a St. Louis Mulching Company

by Maurice Dowell on March 23, 2016
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Your Dowco mulch project receives 3 important things.  First a world class bed cleanup, followed by a crisp shovel edge and finally the smooth application of your mulch of choice. 

First: A Spring Bed Cleanup 

During the bed cleanup, any remaining ornamental grasses are cut low and as level as possible without damaging the crown; the area where the stems meet the roots.  We remove the dead from spent perennials and cut them back to about 1”.  This helps prevent the spread of any pests or disease that may have over-wintered. 3.16.16_28.png

We pull remaining weeds, blow out stray leaves and rake out the beds.  This smooth surface allows for easier installation and requires less mulch to achieve that final polished appearance! 

Second: A Fresh Bed Edge

You may know the shovel edge by a number of names; spade edge, bed edge, shovel edge or simply edging.  This edge can be created using a shovel, or with a mechanical bed edger.  Edging clearly separates the beds and tree rings from the turf. Spring_Bed_Edging_Dowco.png

Upon completion of your edging the turf-side edge will be perpendicular to the turf while the bed will slope at a 45-degree angle ending approximately 2” below the turf. The edge provides a buffer against invading weeds or grass and provides an aesthetically pleasing look to your landscape beds. A shovel edge is a must for discriminating property owners.

Third: A Top-Dressing of Mulch 

Mulch is the icing on the cake.  It not only adds an attractive, finished look to the landscape, it aids in weed suppression, retains moisture and helps moderate fluctuating soil temperatures protecting your delicate plants from the early spring frosts and summer’s heat waves.

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Deciding what type of mulch to apply is based primarily on personal choice. We normally apply three different types:

1. Double Ground Mulch: Most commonly used in St. Louis. It has a medium consistency, medium color and lasts for about 1 year in our area. It will fade from the sun about mid-season, however late summer cultivating revitalizes and allows this mulch to continue absorbing moisture for your beloved plants.

2. Dyed Mulch: Similar consistency as double ground. This product is treated with a biodegradable dye and will hold its color for at least one season. If dyed mulches are placed on concrete prior to spreading, they may cause temporary staining. Mulch can be dyed brown, black or red.

3. Triple Ground Mulch: Fine consistency and dark brown, almost black color. This mulch is similar to compost in texture, decomposes quickly and is great for use in flower beds.   Triple ground will tend to wash on slopes yet it is my personal favorite due to its color and the fact that I plant so many annuals. 

Our crews top dress existing beds ensuring a finished mulch depth of no more than 3”.  They are trained to keep the mulch off of building sill plates understanding mulch there provides an entry for pests and moisture into your property.  To complete the job our team will rake and often hand smooth the new mulch to deliver a finished look you can be proud of.

Do you want mulch that looks fresh all year?  During the mid-summer bed cultivation, Dowco will turn darker mulch from the bottom and rotate it to the top, refreshing your beds and reestablishing that spring color. 

The benefits of the bed cultivation don’t stop with the aesthetic values!  A bed cultivation allows water and nutrients to soak in to the root zone of your plants and helps keep the soil, and your plants at the correct temperature.

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Topics: Seasonal Yard Maintenance

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