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Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Posted by sun_worshiper FL 9b (My Page) on
Wed, Sep 15, 10 at 12:16

Hi. I have created some new planting beds this summer and planted out new fruit trees. I've got mango, lychee, atemoya, peach, orange, and lemon trees. I'm now to the point where I'm ready to add a layer of mulch on top. I've never paid much attention to mulch before, and there seem to be a lot of different kinds. I've read that some types of mulch can alter the ph of the soil so much they injure ph sensitive plants. So what types of mulch are best for fruit trees? Or, maybe a better question is, do any kinds harm fruit trees? I've heard the debate about mulching citrus trees and I'm considering whether or not the citrus will be excluded from mulching. So that aside, any particular kind of mulch to look for or avoid?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

when i first mulched my yard over a year ago I made the mistake of getting the red mulch and read the bag after putting it down and it contained herbicides in it.

now i just get cypress or eucalyptus mulch that contains no die or chemicals


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I've always used store bought cypress mulch with good success. I have even used it on citrus without any problem so long as you don't allow it to pile up against the trunk of the tree.

Harry


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I definitely want chemical free - I've also heard that the red mulch can contain arsenic. So I think it is out.

Thanks Harry for information on your success. Nice to hear that you even used cypress on citrus. I do wonder about the validity of claims of detrimental environmental impact of cypress mulch though. See Save Our Cypress if you are interested. I grew up in the northwest, so I'm a tree hugger=)

One of the alternatives they list as more environmentally friendly is pine bark mulch. This is what the existing planting beds in my yard had when I moved in. It has seemed pretty good in the ornamental beds. Anyone have experience using it with fruit trees?

The eucalyptus mango_kush recommends, might be a good choice for me. It is supposed to be farmed rather than harvested from native habitats which I like.

Thanks for the input, this is helping me to narrow in on an answer.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I always thought it was melaleuca Eucalyptus in which case foresting is exactly what you would want to do to it

Here is a link that might be useful: http://www.floridanativeplants.com/articles/mulch_melaleuca.shtml


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and also

also Lychee trees are the most important to mulch, they have very sensitive tiny ground roots around the dripline. Mango trees i would say the least important, at least here, of course mulch is a definite layer of cold protection for any tree.

Here is a link that might be useful: Benefits of mulching lychee trees -Dr. John Crane


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Up here we can get wood chips for free, but they come from a wide range of trees. Lots of oak, maple, etc etc. I've used it all and it has worked great on my non tropical fruit trees (apples, pears, plums, peaches) and a whole variety of small fruits... One thing is that in the spring, i get a huge variety of mushrooms popping up, some are pretty funky looking. Even up here in my garden beds wood chips break down quickly over the summer and need to be reapplied every spring.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I use pine mulch on all my fruit trees with good results. The pine mulch will help in lowering the PH. Since my water is on the higher end the PH scale 8.2, I use only pine bark as the mulch to help counter the higher PH.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Hmmm....I was totally ignorant about the cypress mulch furor. I thought it was just by-product of milling trees that were already being harvested for lumber. I feel kind of guilty now. Oh well, you live and hopefully learn. Thanks for making me aware of this.

Harry


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I use pine bark mulch for everything. It has the benefit of improving your soil as it breaks down.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I also used Pine Bark Mulch and the trees seem to really like it! I've not had any problems using it...its a great organic compost once it starts breaking down. Plus it keeps the soil from drying out too fast in this brutal heat. Like Harry said just keep it several inches away from the trunk.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I use pine bark, macadamia shells, fallen mac leaves. In our dry climate the leaves take at least 2 years to decompose, even with irrigation. Problem with these types of mulch is when fertilizing I have to pull back the mulch and then restore it.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Ref Cypress mulch, the wood is also very resistant to breaking down which does not help build organic matter into the soil.

I like Pine Bark Fines the best. I think it looks beautiful and is very good for the soil. The added bonus is that a 2 bag of fines is way heavier and goes a lot farther than the Pine Bark Nuggets since the nuggets are so bulky thus less product in the bag.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Harry,
Don't fall for that environmentalist propaganda. Keep on using cypress mulch.

jb_fla,
Have you noticed the fines breaking down a lot quicker and needing to be replaced more often? Also does the fines allow for weeds to grow in it compared to the nuggets? I am asking this because I need to re-mulch my blueberry bed and I was considering using fines.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Thanks for all the great responses! The link regarding Melaleuca is very interesting mango_kush. I'm in central FL and don't recall seeing it offered here - but I'll have to look more closely. Just out of curiosity, does it have the characteristic melaleuca smell? Happens to be a smell I'm not fond of personally, so I'm wondering how fragrant it is.

Great to hear so many people are having good luck with pine bark on fruit trees. I didn't know about "Pine Bark Fines" - thanks for the specific name jb_fla. That looks like it would be very good for improving the soil. My soil is pretty much straight sand. I've brought in a lot of compost (11 yards!) to amend my new planting beds. But still - very sandy. The pine nuggets take a long time to break down (more than a year). How long does the Pine Bark Fines take to break down? How often do you add more? Also, is it good at suppressing weeds? Or as a soil enhancer does it not work as well at weed suppression?

I've had both my soil and water tested. The soil is at 6.5 and the water is 7.0. Would I need to worry about the pine bark lowering the ph too much over time nullzero? I'm curious how much of an impact the pine bark can have over time.

Thanks so much everyone for the great information! I plan to order somewhere in the range of 10 yards of mulch for all my beds - so I want to choose wisely=)


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I can't answer your questions about Pine Bark Fines for using as mulch/soil additives for in-ground plants,...but I guess is it would probably work great? I do however use Pine Bark Fines for all my container potting mix, its an excellent additive to my mix. I DO sift it first to get rid of all the fine dust to keep the pot from retaining too much water. Its an excellent additive for Container potting mix IMO and works very well for me.

Here's what it looks like so you can see what you're looking for when you go to look for it. I bought mine at Walmart, they are NOT easy to find around here. They just started carrying it this past Spring, HD and Lowe's don't carry it around here. I've heard it depends on your location if they carry it or not.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

This pic is primarily my muscaine grape bed (though in the forefront is my potted plants), but in the back you can see 2 cattley guaves and a carambola between them. As you can see I dont have a problem with weeds and do not have any weed barrier.

I think that the blueberries would appreciate the fines more than the nuggets. The fines probably break down faster, but not so much that you have to constantly replace it. Plus the nuggets allow far more space for weed seeds than a layer of fines would.

Puglvr, we may use the same recipe for containered plants. I use 2.5 cu yard pine fines, 5 gallons perlite, 5 gallons peat moss, 2 cups slow release fert and 2 cups lime all mixed together. Works very good for me.

Mulch


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

My personal favorite is free, chipped-up tree trimmer 'waste'. Most trimmers have to pay to dispose of it and would rather just give it away to a homeowner. Being composed partly of leaves, it turns to compost with 6 to 9 months - which is a plus in that it very rapidly builds up soil; but, it's also a negative in that you have to constantly replace. I lay it down about 8 to 12 inches thick, and within a few months it quickly decomposes to just a couple of inches. I know some folks are quick to point out that it has the potential of having chemicals or pesticides and what not. But, I've laid down over 200 yards of it so far and my trees sure don't seem to be complaining :-).


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Jb, your mulch looks great! Similar potting mix, but I use turface, pine bark fines, and crushed granite/perlite or
coarse silica...(Al's Mix) from the container forum.

Jeff, you're very lucky...we have NO freebies here in my area for mulches...I wish we did. I would definitely take advantage of it. At $3 a bag it can get very expensive to do all the trees.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I have gone the tree trimmer's dump off method. Problems: The quality of some of the mulch is not good. I don't care for palm shreds and there seems to be a pretty good bit of that in the mixes I have received. There have been garbage included with some drop offs, cans, plastic, etc. I also have had a problem with both Brazilian Pepper and Bishofia seeds in the trimmings that love to sprout and spread. The quantity is always more than I care to have at a given point. It seems the mulch is much better when it has some time to sit and cure, so to speak. That leaves a small mountain of trimmings that is not only an eye sore but is a great home and attractant of rats, which we have many of here in West Davie. But, if you can get the best quality trimmings and have the time to cure and spread.....I think this method is quite good. My neighbors used to use barn sweepings that they got from neighbors with horse farms. Once the manure cools off, it worked quite well. Now that all the horses have left, they have gone to the trimmings method. Works nicely but they have a whole lot more time than me to employ it.

Harry


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Good points, Harry. You do need to be careful when selecting a trimmer. The guys that I've gotten my tree trimmings from will actually wait until they have a 'clean' load (ie, a load with no palm branches and no brazilian pepper, etc). I'll usually give them 40$ or 50$ for their efforts, which is still cheap as dirt for me, since they'll give me 15 to 20 cubic yards at a time. You also have to be careful not to contract a guy with one of those massive ~60 yard dump trucks with a crane on top. My wife did that once, and we ended up with a cracked driveway :-(. Lastly, you'll occasionally run into the oddballs who think they are Home Depot, wanting to charge $1k for their load :-).

I've never had to wait for it to cure. I'll hire a guy the same day to go and spread it out in the backyard. And, since I got rid of all the grass, 20 yards of mulch gets used up mighty quick :-). I've gone through well over 200 cubic yards of it and to date haven't had any issues (other than the cracked driveway).


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Re: Cypress Mulch

The Save Our Cypress Coalition's points are valid and true.

It is not nor has never been propaganda. Louisiana lost some 80,000 acres of cypress trees to the mulch industry and the other gulf coast states are being equally decimated. Look at the photos on the website and some of the other articles and info and educate yourself.

Do not dismiss the impacts we as consumers can have by purchasing particular products from unregulated industries.

As for the colored mulch. Best not to use anything that is not natural in your garden when it applies to growing food crops.

Here is a link that might be useful: Save Our Cypress website.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Thanks puglvr and jb_fla for the pictures. Thanks for the great visual proof that it works for suppressing weeds jb_fla! I am leaning strongly towards going with the pine bark fines. I was able to find a place near me that will deliver it by the yard which is great.

I looked around this weekend and can't find the melaleuca anywhere in my area. Looks like you have to be a bit further south to have a good source for it.

Have you ever had any issue with termites jeffhagen? I found this nice study IFAS Mulch and Termites that ranked a number of mulches for their attractiveness to termites. The regional utility mulch tested seems most comparable to tree trimmer waste and was most attractive to termites. But I have no realworld experience here - just looking at the study figures.

I did some more of my planting this weekend and am nearly ready to make my mulch order=) Thanks everyone for all the input!


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

nice link sun worshipper, makes me lean more towards eucalyptus mulch

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Southern pine sapwood (used as a standard, because termites are known to feed on pine)
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Cypress sapwood
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Cypress heartwood
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Melaleuca sapwood
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Melaleuca heartwood

Termites survived better and consumed pine and cypress sapwoods while not surviving or consuming either cypress heartwood or melaleuca. In other studies, termite survival on cypress was 22% compared to 81% for slash pine (Smythe and Carter 1969) and 1% and 72% for melaleuca and slash pine (Carter and Huffman 1982).


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Good question, sun_worshipper. I never even thought about the termites. I haven't noticed them, but that also doesn't mean that they're not there. The living organisms I have seen in the mulch are:

- fungus: many different colors, shapes, and sizes, more so when it rains :-)

- tiny insects: I'm not sure what they are, but when the mulch is fresh, it will sometimes attract millions of tiny little jumping insects - seem to be more attracted to certain types of woods.

- millipedes: Once the mulch starts to decay a bit, I'll find huge populations of millipedes. They are not visible on the surface, but simply scraping away the top layer of mulch will expose them. I've read on the internet that some folks dislike these little critters, but I think they're great. They have a voracious appetite for mulch and within just a couple of months, they turn woody mulch into what looks like compost but actually seems to be their excrement.

- earthworms: Once the mulch becomes pretty well composted, the earthworms come out in numbers. These guys are my friends. After maybe a year or two, the line between black compost and white sand (ie, florida soil) becomes invisible. The worms seem to be doing the job of mixing the compost layer with the soil.

One other thing I've noticed: In an area where there was previously just grass (never mulched), fresh tree-trimmer mulch will take quite a while to decompose (up to a year or more). However, in the areas that had previously been topped with mulch-turn-to-compost, fresh trimmer mulch will decompose extremely fast (in as little as 3 or 4 months). My explanation is that bacterial levels are so high that the mulch breaks down at break neck speeds.


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My 2 cents :-)

Don't mean to beat this topic into the ground :-) but here's my two cents on a couple of different types of mulch:

Cypress
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+ Pros: lasts forever (3 to 4 years?), relatively cheap
+ Cons: takes longer to build soil, can have environmental impact

Eucalyptus
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+ Pros: breaks down pretty fast (a year?)
+ Cons: slightly more expensive than cypress, must replace more often

Tree-Trimmer Mulch
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+ Pros: FREE!!, breaks down very fast - great soil builder
+ Cons: If you're into keeping a meticulous, clean looking garden, it's probably not going to work for you :-); needs replacement pretty often.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

  • Posted by zands 10b FL (My Page) on
    Mon, Sep 20, 10 at 22:24

A friend is a dedicated user or chipped tree trimmings that a service will dump onto his driveway for free. Saves them dump fees and a trip to the dump. He mulches very very heavy in his back yard where his sub-tropical treasures are. No grass there, just mulch and a ground cover plant that is a peanut relative. Never heard him mention rats but he has mentioned palm fronds and other undesirables in the mulch sometimes

He gets the mulch dumped in his driveway. And moves it from there. Stick your arm into it and it is hot! Here in Fl I have to think it will compost quickly if piled up...even quicker if cheap 6 6 6 fertilizer is lightly worked into it. Florida soil is beach sand with old coral underneath.

Chipped trees and shrubs are the ideal way to go to improve soil here. The Florida heat will do in those chips much quicker than in the cooler parts of America. The trees and other woody growth has sunk their roots into the coral layer (6" to 24" down) and sucked major and minor trace minerals out of the old coral. Integrated all these into their biology. The coral layer must contain all the trace minerals the ocean does and on the major level it is calcium plus magnesium. That calcium and magnesium was filtered out of the ocean water and used by these marine creatures to build structures like coral

I knew this insect exterminator who had some excellent organic smarts. I asked him how he could account for such vigorous shrub, brush and tree growth in vacant lots here. I asked him how they could do great in this beach sand. South Florida soil is not sandy. It is sand, as in zero clay content. He said all those bushes and trees had sunk roots into the coral where they were getting major and trace minerals. That is their secret. So chip these and other trees and woody growth and make your humus rich and mineral rich soil from them

Today we can chip all these so easily with gasoline and diesel powered engines. A gift of our modern age. Who chipped shrubs and trees 100 years ago? You couldn't. I think ye old slash and burn of the Indians was a rough substitute. But lots of carbon went up in smoke thus went to waste. You want all that carbon in the soil. But the charcoal and ashes left over after slash and burn are legitimate soil amendments. Slash and burn has logic behind it

I know another couple that goes the tree trimming route. They get it dumped in their driveway and move it from there. Their back yard is shady and jungle like. Fruit trees back there and very tall cooking banana called musa saba. Their ground is basically mulch. With my hands I dug down five inches. Very nice black humus. In Florida there is no clay to hold in the humus. The humus holds in the humus plus mulch is always creating new humus. Mulch preserves soil humus by keeping it cooler. Mulch also moderates and banks rainfall so it doesn't wash down major and trace minerals from Florida's sand soils so quickly

Me-- so far just get mulch bags at HD but am thinking about getting a dumping of chipped tree trimmings

Here is a 30 year old must read on wood chip compost piles ----He is in Provence. Florida is hotter so his scheme works better here http://www.motherearthnews.com/Organic-Gardening/1980-03-01/The-Genius-of-Jean-Pain.aspx

http://www.google.com/images?um=1&hl=en&rlz=1B3GGLL_enUS393US393&biw=1077&bih=543&tbs=isch:1&aq=f&aqi=&oq=&gs_rfai=&q=%22jean pain%22 compost

Here is a link that might be useful: Jean Pain wood chip compost


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

i would love to find a cheap haul of mulch


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Thanks for the rundown of the kinds of living organisms you find in your mulch jeffhagen. That is very useful information. Your short pro/con list is also very useful. Where would you rate pine bark in that list? Part of my goal is to keep my planting beds looking "meticulous and clean", so I suspect that the tree trimmer mulch probably is not a good choice for me. I won't argue the benefit for the plants, but I have a highly visible (from the street) garden area and to meet HOA requirements I have to keep it pretty. But that is a small concession for being able to have my own fruit trees. I have talked with other neighbors who were surprised that my fruit tree plan was approved by my HOA - their requests had been denied. I think the reason I got approval is that I planned out where each tree will go and showed a 3D rendering of how food producing plants can still be aesthetically pleasing. I'll post some pictures of the transformation when I get time. At the moment I'm too busy doing to do show and tell. That will be later=) I have been taking pics as I go - they're just still all on my camera.

mango_kush, if you liked the ifas link, click on "mulches" on the top of that page and you can get to a bunch of other IFAS pages on the topic of mulch. I found quite a bit of useful info there.

zands - very nice link. I had not seen the Jean Pain system before, very ingenious system.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I've never used pine bark for mulch. I bet it's an excellent mulch - very attractive in the places I've seen it used. With pine bark fines, you'd think you'd get the attractiveness of pine bark with a faster decomposition rate due to the smaller particle size. I do use it in my potting mix though; it works very well there. The problem tends to be price. Pine bark fines can be really pricey. The bushel stop charges 6.75$ for a 2cf bag. Once I saw it on closeout at Walmart for 1$ a bag and I bought almost all they had :-).

If you have a strong homeowners association, then they will have a fit when they see your driveway covered with tree-timmer mulch :-). You would also likely get neighbors barking about the increased animal/insect activity. We have an HOA, but they tend to be fairly lenient. Good thing they let you have the fruit trees. Keeping the yard looking meticulous is a small price to pay for that.

Jeff


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Jeff---- if when I get a tree trimming delivery it is going deep into my back yard. They won't have to dump it on my driveway. The tree trimmers can back up over grass and dump it deep into my property. Still visible from the road but only if you make the effort. Maybe I'll put up cheap temp fencing to obscure the pile. Half the pile to mulch fruit trees and half to decompose down to the good black stuffs

I won't accept delivery if soil is wet from rains. That will gouge, rut and compact the turf


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

my yard has side access to the back for a truck too, so thats what i would do.

i think im going to just stick to $2 a bag @ Lowes


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

jeffhagen-

HOA? They'd love me! Around here people park in their yards (we don't have sidewalk/curb)... I put the mulch right up to the tree trunk, but i put a piece of hardware cloth around the trunk...up here in the winter the voles show up and start chewing on fruit trees.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

@sun_worshiper

I read that 1980 Jean Pain in Mother Earth when it came out. I have always been intrigued by it. He is obviously going dual purpose on chipped trees. He is also using it to make hot water in his chipped tree compost pile.

The whole idea is to mine the earth via trees/shrubs then chip and compost them for the organic garden. Trees and shrubs have roots that go deeper and wide so do a better job of mining minerals than a vegetable plant. Fl is so hot we can skip composting and just mulch heavily (some say 10" deep is good) around trees with wood chips and see it decay quickly.

Maybe I haven't been around enough but every Fl nursery I have seen that is making its own black top soil and compost is simply chipping trees and brush and letting it decay into black stuff


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

jeffhagen - next step will be checking into pricing=) I found a website that advertises they deliver pine bark fines by the yard in my area. But have to call for the price. I'm waiting to do that until I know exactly how much I need. But I can post that info if people are interested.

zands - I like the description of allowing the deep roots to mine the minerals and bring them to the surface. I hadn't considered that before.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

zands that peanut groundcover is an excellent nitrogen fixer, Whitman used it on his property. i wish i could get it to take over my grass here, hopefully with time (and shade) and mulch i can get it to take over


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

@mango Kush
I had to look up Whitman. Mr William Whitman was a big donor to Fairchild. My friend who is using that peanut (relative) ground cover got the idea from a tropical fruit enthusiast.

Same friend told me about a visit in the last year to the house of a recently retired USDA guy. Where his fruit trees are the ground is all wood chip trimmings mulch. With wooden walkways above the mulch.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I planted one of my new beds with perennial peanut as the groundcover as a test to see how well I like it. It will be interesting to see how it fills in and how well it co-exists with fruit trees. The city of Oviedo uses it in the street medians and it looks fantastic. But be sure to find a nursery that can sell you "Ecoturf" rather than the other types. Here's a description of the difference Eocoturf vs. Golden Glory. For anyone in central FL, Lukas sells Ecoturf.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

the link just circles back to this thread.

i googled it though. Eco Turf actually forms rhizomes that build mychorizza fungi in the soil and help release nitrogen and phosphorus so a yard with a good covering of it would only need potash supplement.

i wonder how hard it will be get it to take over my mixed st augustine grass. i would love to find some sod pallates.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Sorry, some copy paste nonsense with the link apparently. Here's the actual link EcoTurf vs. Golden Glory . Yeah, the key difference is spreading by underground rhizomes vs above ground stolons. That difference impacts drought tolerance and nitrogen fixing. I like this link because it shows pictures of them side by side so you can see the subtle difference. I don't know if it could fight it out with st. augustine grass or not tho...


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

i may use some plywood to cover and kill my st augustine and plant perennial peanut in patches

have to find a good source first


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

@kush

Just find someone and get some "peanut" cuttings from him/her


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

i took a plug from my friend Erics yard but it died, i think it got too much sun or the bareroot drive home and transplant it went into shock.

its kinda sparse in his yard so i dont want to take too much. im not sure if it was eco-turf either.

it would be nice to find a source of perennial peanut sod, maybe even split a pallette with locals.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

mangokush,
Excalibur has perennial peanut for sale. It's probably kind of far for you to go though just for some perennial peanut.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Just about ready to place my mulch order finally=) I decided to go with pine bark fines. I found a place in the Orlando area that delivers by the yard. For those who are curious, pine bark fines is $29 per yard.

jb_fla, how thickly do you lay down your pine bark fines? I need to decide how many inches thick I want mine so I know how much to order.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I laid mine down about 2-3". Its probably better to lay down 3-4" but I plan on adding to every year.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Thanks jb_fla!


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Are bamboo leaves good mulch for fruit trees?


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

I'm not a mulch expert...but I don't see why not. As far as I have exeperienced....and leafy material, once broken down makes good mulch.


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RE: Best Kind of Mulch for Fruit Trees?

Thanks to Jeff, I too use tree chippings.

Yesterday I got ~25 yards delivered from one of his sources, for the second time enough to cover my yard ~8" deep with enough leftover to cover spots that get bare for the next 6-8 months.

The last time this guy delivered oak and pine, this time mostly Mango tree chips.

Like Jeff said it decomposes fast so I learned from the last time to lay it down REALLY heavily.

Getting a reliable source is important. You do not want palms, or anything with thorns like citrus, robellini, or Bougainvillea or anything of that sort as thorns decompose REALLY slowly and will stick dogs, and children (and yourself) even through thong footwear.

On the down side, it cost $100 and days to move it to the back yard. On the plus side, it appears to enrich my already not too bad soil, and provides nutrients that make fertilizing more of a spotty affair than I think it would if I used something like cypress.

Anyway, my stuff is growing really well and I have no complaints.

Gary


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