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The Importance of Compost and Mulch

Mulch differs from compost as compost is fully decomposed while a properly processed natural bark mulch is only partially decomposed. Mulch can be harmful to plants if placed in the root zone. Mulch should be placed on top of the soil only.

Conversely, compost is fully decomposed and is an excellent soil amendment as it is nutrient rich. Compost can be placed close to the root zone.

Some sources of bark mulch in Nova Scotia are from old saw mill or pulp mill dump sites. Old bark at these sites can be between 20 and 30 years old and can be significantly or fully decomposed. Such material has a high organic content and a pH in the 7 range. Soil analysis of this material by the Nova Scotia Agriculture College indicates its composition is very similar to the compost we use in our soil mixes to ensure they meet landscape architects specifications to enhance plant growth. We believe you should be able to see small pieces of bark in a quality bark mulch. Absence of bark and presence of pieces of wood is often a telltale sign.

Benefits of composting and mulch include ***
Water/moisture conservation

Mulch and compost act as a sponge to hold water and nutrients. Mulch minimizes the drying effects of the sun and wind by more than 70%. This encourages healthy plant growth, prevents drying of shallow roots, and results in less watering.

Weed control

Thick layers of mulch can reduce germination and growth of weeds, eliminating the need for herbicides.

Insulation

Mulch helps to stabilize soil temperature, keeping root zones cooler in summer.

Soil enrichment

Mulch, as it decomposes, and compost help to replenish and enrich the soil. They improve soil texture, making it more porous and creating an ideal environment for earthworms and micro-organisms, essential to healthy soil.

A Personalized Approach
Processing Facilities in:
Sackville, N.S.
Rawdon, N.S.
Oxford, N.S.