Sheet mulching around existing tree - what to do

Discussion in 'Planting, growing, nurturing Plants' started by susann, Jun 24, 2008.

  1. susann

    susann Junior Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2008
    Messages:
    57
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I am preparing to sheet mulch a new bed out the front of the house. in one corner of the proposed bed is a deciduous hibiscus. At the moment it is all just lawn and weeds.

    Do I leave the space under and around the tree un-sheet mulched? If so, do I 'standard' mulch up under the tree to stop the weeds? I will be hard pruning (cut down in height by half) the tree before doing the new bed.

    If I do sheet mulch up under the tree will this affect the tree? How does it affect the tree?

    Have read lots about sheet mulching but nothing to solve this question.

    Thanks, S.


    (I live on 1000sq in Northern NSW)
     
  2. Raymondo

    Raymondo Junior Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2008
    Messages:
    133
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Re: Sheet mulching around existing tree - what to do

    You can sheet mulch right up to within a few inches of the trunk if you wish. Won't harm the shrub at all, might even do it some good. Particularly if you throw some manure down before mulching. I intend sheet mulching around my fruit trees as they go in.
     
  3. gardenlen

    gardenlen Group for banned users

    Joined:
    May 14, 2004
    Messages:
    3,464
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Re: Sheet mulching around existing tree - what to do

    g'day s,

    yep go to it, just leave enough space so the mulch doesn't contact the tree bark, 4 to6"s will be heaps. would suggest if ther are food trees in particular this might be the time to spread some organic material around their drip line margin before covering with mulch. if you have clay then a good dose of gypsum over the whole area won't go astray. see how we do our gardens it is much the same process.

    len
     
  4. jaffacake

    jaffacake Junior Member

    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Re: Sheet mulching around existing tree - what to do

    Hi all

    Quick question - is sheet mulching where you cover existing lawn etc with cardboard/paper and cover with manure and straw? How deep should it be?

    Many thanks
    Sally in South AFrica
     
  5. gardenlen

    gardenlen Group for banned users

    Joined:
    May 14, 2004
    Messages:
    3,464
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Re: Sheet mulching around existing tree - what to do

    g'day sally,

    yup that's it, need to start at around 10 or 12"s deep, as it breaks down you will be adding that's the game. did you check our garden pic's they'll give you an idea.

    len
     
  6. susann

    susann Junior Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2008
    Messages:
    57
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Re: Sheet mulching around existing tree - what to do

    hi Sally, I found sheet mulching comes with many recipes - but all have the same idea.

    Here's what I did - using only what we had on hand

    cut a edge using a shovel (about 15cm) to stop the grass growing into the new bed.(you can edge with wood etc) mowed the lawn, added grass clippings (about 1cm), blood and bone fertisiler and lime. Give it a good soak with the hose.

    Next put cardboard and newspaper down (newspaper in australia uses natural dyes) thickly and overlapping. Give it a good soak with the hose.

    Next i added a heap of compost from the garden (a bit weedy and not quite 'done' hope this will be ok) and then lots of chopped up prunings (I did this with my secatuers - took ages but then it was free materials to use). Give it a good soak with the hose. Then added a thick layer of straw (can use woodchip etc). Give it a good soak with the hose.

    I planted seedlings straight into it by digging small holes and adding a bit of potting mix.

    Hope that gives you some ideas, cheers S.
     
  7. jaffacake

    jaffacake Junior Member

    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Re: Sheet mulching around existing tree - what to do

    Thanks everyone, I'm about to give that a bash. I've had chicken domes on cattle pasture, but after a couple of weeks they've not made a great impact on the grass, although the area is now well fertilised and covered with lawn clippings etc. I think it'll save me a lot of effort to sheet mulch over these areas.

    Can one plant carrot seeds directly into the sheet mulch or are seedlings preferable?

    Many thanks
    Sally
     
  8. gardenlen

    gardenlen Group for banned users

    Joined:
    May 14, 2004
    Messages:
    3,464
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Re: Sheet mulching around existing tree - what to do

    probably better with seedlings if you are only going to sue pure sheet mulching and not introduce something like mushroom compost on the top layer. with seedling you use a handfull or 2 of some organic matter like mushroom compost to create a planting pocket.

    len
     
  9. susann

    susann Junior Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2008
    Messages:
    57
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Re: Sheet mulching around existing tree - what to do

    I've read that root crops eg carrots are not the best thing to grow in the first year of sheet mulching as the layers may prevent root crops from developing down deeply.
     
  10. IntensiveGardener

    IntensiveGardener Junior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2007
    Messages:
    238
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Re: Sheet mulching around existing tree - what to do

    thats true susann,
    You may want to try a stump rooted (dutch) variety in the first year or try something else like potatoes which will break it up a little as well. Also carrots can fork when given too much fertilizer so the chook droppings may not be great.
    cheers,
    IG
     

Share This Page

-->