How To Reuse Old Mulch

Tips to Reuse Old Mulch

How To Reuse Old Mulch-mulch

We want our gardens to be beautiful and detailed at all times, one of the key components that’s responsible for this is the use of mulches, this natural organic can do wonders for our gardens because mulches serve so many purposes.  But what I found to be so amazing about mulch is it can be used any time of the year no matter the season, but mulch does have an expiry date and will begin to fade and break down losing its beauty over time.

Your flower beds have been nicely trimmed but that faded mulch just does not cut it, what can you do because that old much needs to be replaced and what can you do with that worn and discolored mulch? to find the answers to these questions continue reading.

How to Determine If to Reuse Old Mulch

To determine if old mulch can be reused scoop up a handful, if that coarse texture is not there but feels like fine particles and is difficult to tell the difference from the soil then this is a clear indication that it’s time to add fresh mulch. But if the mulch still retains its looks and texture and its original color for the most part then mulch can be reused.

If the mulch is diseased do not reuse discard, however slime mold that’s harmful and temporary may appear on top of the mulch, this mold appears as bright colored yellow, orange, or red masses. Slim mold will eventually turn a brown color and will in some cases leave a dry white powdery mass.

What to Do with Old Mulch

Although your old mulch can be reused again but if you decide to use fresh mulch here is what to do.

  • Incorporating old mulch into the soil is a great way to reuse old mulch, this may take a little work but can be accomplished with a shovel or pitchfork
  • Turn or loosen old mulch with a rock rake
  • New mulch can be mixed with old mulch as long as the old mulch is not that faded so that both can blend together
  • Old mulch can be used in your compost bin, this is a great way to build a compost pile that’s a natural organic
  • New mulch can be used to fill in spots where old mulch has faded provided both of them can blend together

Other Mulch Alternatives

There are other alternatives or choices of mulch for example grass clippings, leaves, newspaper, cardboard, pine, straw, etc…

Additional information

  • When spreading much only add a 2 to 3-inch layer of much to bedding areas and around trees and plants what you don’t want is to pile mulch too high, avoid the volcano mulching around trees
  • Dont add new mulch to mulch that’s old and hard to break up  or lossen the old much first  before overlaying it with new mulch, this move will help your soil to breathe and will encourage better moisture absorption
  • When placing mulch around trees and garden plants leave a space or ring of about 2-3 inches, mulch should not make contact with tree trunks or plants which can encourage disease
  • Dispose of old mulch to control larvae that use mulch to over winter

The final word on how to reuse old mulch

That old mulch that has sat in your garden can still be used it’s all a matter of knowing what to look for and knowing what to do, this natural organic has proven to work wonders in the garden so before you think about discarding that old mulch have a look at this guide that can help you to determine what to do.


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About the author

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Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.