Strawberry mulching is an important point in plant care, but not many gardeners know that there are many types of mulch. The article will consider the types of mulch and methods of their application, as well as their advantages and disadvantages.
Why mulch strawberries?
Not all gardeners know that mulching allows the plant to grow, develop, and also get sick less. So what are the positives about mulching?
Method 1. From weeds can be disposed of in the old manner. But there are more effective ways
- Moisture less evaporates from the ground due to a thick layer of shelter, so you need to water the plant much less often.
- Due to the fact that the berries are not in contact with the ground, the plant is less sick with diseases like gray rot.
- Remains warm in the ground and the roots in winter less freeze.
- Contact with the ground can lead to rotting of the berries or their pollution, if strawberry mulching is carried out - such problems usually do not arise.
- Weeds grow much less, especially when agrofibre, film or any fabric is used as a flooring.
- It is noticed that mulching significantly increases the volume of the crop.
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Organic types of mulch are perceived by gardeners much better than inorganic ones, and they bring great benefits. In fact, this is any material that can rot, fertilizing the ground and strawberries. So, they include:
Method 2. Mulching strawberries organic mulch
- any paper material (cardboard, newspapers, sheets);
- manure, compost, peat;
- bark, chips, wood chips;
- any greens, mowed grass, leaves, needles, straw, hay.
The advantages of organic material:
- such material is available to all, it does not even always need to buy;
- organic is an excellent fertilizer for the soil.
Organic mulch also has many disadvantages:
- manure, compost smell very bad;
- if paper is used, it is only without pictures, because dyes can spoil the composition of the soil;
- greens and hay can be with seeds that begin to germinate on the nutrient ground;
- if we talk about sawdust or wood shavings, they, as a rule, do not apply to mulching strawberries. Practice has shown that this material draws nitrogen from the earth. Although many gardeners believe that sawdust only mixing with the ground, pulling nitrogen, and when used as mulch, this effect does not occur.
Before using fresh grass as a ground cover, it should be dried, and manure should be used up. The selected material you just need to impose around each bush. During the procedure, all the branches and berries are raised and lowered already on the mulch.
What are the advantages of inorganic mulch and special shelters?
Inorganic mulch and special shelters are a simple covering material in which holes are made and planted with bushes. The most common today is agrofiber. Its peculiarity is that it is easy to lay it and just as easy to remove, it does not give the weeds the opportunity to grow and interfere with the care or collection of strawberries, keeps moisture and heat in the ground. In general, this type of mulch is easy to use and quite popular.
Method 3. Mulching strawberries with a special film
In addition to agrofibre, this should include:
- rubberized fabric;
- gravel, stones, crushed stone;
- any natural fabric, burlap, non-woven fiber;
- a film specifically designed for mulching strawberries and other plants.
Among the disadvantages of using inorganic material, the following points can be mentioned:
- In some cases, covering material may interfere with insect pollination of strawberries. Therefore, in the spring it can be removed, and closer to the summer to lay again.
- Not every material can serve for a long time in the garden. So, a special film can crumble over the course of one summer under the influence of ultraviolet rays, burlap rotting at high humidity, gravel, crushed stone and stones are quite troublesome to clean - this causes great difficulties.
Mulching strawberries with inorganic material is a simple process. In the case of agrofibre it is worth planting the bushes on the already laid canvas with holes made in it under the bushes. The same applies to the film, rubberized fabric. Roofing material, non-woven fiber, burlap spreads between the rows. They must "hammer" all the free space with honey bushes. Gravel stones and rubble are poured, like organic mulch under the bushes, so that all the sheets and berries are on them, and not under them or on the ground.
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Unlike the above types of mulch, decorative looks more natural and fits into any landscape, so it is recommended for use under strawberries, regardless of the location and type of plot. The use of decorative mulch is exactly the same as organic.
Method 4. Decorative mulching strawberries
The advantages of this material are many:
- natural decoration of any area;
- retention up to 85% of moisture in the ground;
- soil protection against erosion;
- decrease in the summer temperature of the earth by about 8 degrees, and in winter maintaining at the level of 5-6 degrees.
Of the disadvantages of decorative mulching of strawberries can only select the price. It is too expensive for many, although experienced gardeners claim that the material pays for itself with a rich strawberry harvest.