What is pine straw mulch?
Pine straw is a pine needle that has fallen from a pine tree. Pine needles are used in flower beds as a ground cover for landscaping. Pine straw helps insulate the soil from temperature fluctuations and will not move with heavy rains. Pine straw is excellent on hills and slopes because the needles interlock after spreading and keep the pine straw from moving. Pine Straw is also referred to as Pine Needle Mulch and does not exhibit all of the problems of hardwood mulch.
What type of shrubs, plants, or flowers grow well with pine straw?
A wide variety of plants thrive with pine straw mulch, including azaleas, camellias, hostas, ferns, hydrangea, magnolias, coleus, rhododendrons, snapdragons, cineraria, bleeding heart, geranium, lily of the valley, rose of sharon, rhodies, hellebores, astilbe, strawberries, blueberries, and choke cherry. Because this is not an exhaustive list, please consult your local professional for answers to questions about specific plants not named here.
How deep should a pine straw application be?
Pine straw should be spread 2 – 3 inches deep on the ground surface. The pine straw should be shaken over desired area so that it is distributed in a loose, fluffy manner. While this is a bit time consuming, it will achieve two very important objectives, providing a very attractive ground cover and yielding the correct square footage from each box. Applying the straw in a clumpy fashion will result in a much less attractive look and will cover a smaller area.
Does pine straw help protect against the cold weather?
Yes. Placing pine straw around the base of trees or other plants is very effective in protecting their root systems from the cold. If you are trying to protect a small tree, make a pine straw bed about three inches deep and two feet in diameter around its base. If you live in a very cold climate. the depth of the straw bed should be about six inches.
Does pine straw help control weeds?
Yes. At a depth of about three inches, pine straw ground cover can be an effective method of weed control. The deeper the pine straw is applied, the better the weed control. One way that pine straw helps to control weeds is by blocking the light so that it does not get to the infant weeds and without light, weeds have a hard time surviving.
How often should pine straw be applied?
If the straw is being used to protect plants and add to the soil, it should be applied annually. If it is being used for decorative purposes, it should be applied twice a year. Most of our customers put out their straw in the spring and again before the onset of winter.