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-   -   Rock Vs. Mulch (http://www.diychatroom.com/f16/rock-vs-mulch-8307/)

tigerbalm2424 05-08-2007 07:35 AM

Rock Vs. Mulch
 
I am looking to plant some Dwarf English Boxwoods as a hedge in my front yard and I have found some readings that state mulch to be used around the plant to retain moisture and stop some of the heat from the sun. Then later I read that the plant soil must be well drained! :huh:

I really want to plant in a rock bed, whats the difference in rocks and mulch from a plant point of view?:whistling2:

Brik 05-08-2007 11:28 AM

Mulch drains fine and helps keep soil below moist. Rock or gravel mulch looks good, drains well and does not break down like wood mulch. Downside is that it retains heat and radiates it back to the surrounding plants. It can get hot to the touch! Things like petunias will wither and die quickly. Large established plantings will be be OK.

tigerbalm2424 05-08-2007 11:38 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brik (Post 44158)
Mulch drains fine and helps keep soil below moist. Rock or gravel mulch looks good, drains well and does not break down like wood mulch. Downside is that it retains heat and radiates it back to the surrounding plants. It can get hot to the touch! Things like petunias will wither and die quickly. Large established plantings will be be OK.

Thanks! :yes:

Is there anything I could lay down before the rock that would help with heat radiating back to the plant? I will be installing fabric first but its black so that really wont help.

Brik 05-08-2007 11:44 AM

Nothing I can think of. White will be less hot than say brown or red.

tigerbalm2424 05-08-2007 11:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brik (Post 44163)
Nothing I can think of. White will be less hot than say brown or red.

Oh well, the rock is dark blue/pink granite. :laughing:

Brik 05-08-2007 12:03 PM

I'm no expert but have used colored stone for mulch over fabric and have experienced pansies and such wilting away from the heat. We also had some pear trees and other large shrubs that did fine. Your boxwood may be fine. Keep em watered until they are established and you may be fine.

handy man88 05-08-2007 01:25 PM

I'd keep it simple and stick with mulch. Mulch is cheaper and gives you more ground coverage. Plus, it's much lighter. A bag of rocks can be 50#. I use mulch and rock for my landscaping, but only use the rocks under my HVAC system. That way, I can spray weeds and not worry about having to replenish this area since mulch can easily deteriorate and/or blow away.

tigerbalm2424 05-08-2007 01:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by handy man88 (Post 44188)
I'd keep it simple and stick with mulch. Mulch is cheaper and gives you more ground coverage. Plus, it's much lighter. A bag of rocks can be 50#. I use mulch and rock for my landscaping, but only use the rocks under my HVAC system. That way, I can spray weeds and not worry about having to replenish this area since mulch can easily deteriorate and/or blow away.

I already have 13 yards of it sitting in the driveway, mostly used for other applications. I like the look of the rock and want to use it in the bed so it is for the most part maintenace free, not having to replace mulch every year or two.


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