Need advice about sheet mulching
I am mainly wondering if it is always necessary to put down a layer of newspapers or cardboard or whatnot before you start putting down mulch. I am hoping to hook up with a source of free mulch that will just come and dump stuff in my front yard for me to spread around. There are many areas where I could just spread 6-8 inches of mulch and just leave it undisturbed for a LOOOOONNNGGG time (maybe plant some trees again next fall). That would smother any weeds and grass, right? And the seeds wouldn't germinate unless the area is disturbed? I plan to do the newspaper thing in areas I will be using for annual plantings (vegetables), but in areas that are mainly going to be trees and pathways, can I just spread the mulch real thick and leave it be?
Also, what are your favourite odd things to add to the mulch? I have read shredded paper (any paper?), is there anything else that may be available around that people don't usually think of?