Do you despise weeding? I don't. I find it relaxing and I love the gratification I get from seeing a perfect row of my garden sans weeds. But let's face it, weeding can take hours, even days depending on how big your garden is. It is a never ending fight between keeping the soil beautifully bare and providing an opportunistic home for fast growing weeds. This is why I mulch :D
Mulching can save you time, money, and keeps your garden looking perfectly groomed. Mulching is widely used in permaculture and biodynamic gardens. You can use any material you have in abundance to essentiallI prefer to use grass clippings in the Summer and maple leaves in the Fall. I have also used hay (without seeds), kale, rhubarb leaves, zucchini leaves, comfrey leaves... the earth is abundant and your options are endless!
During the summer once my garden is fully situated I immediately spread grass clippings around every plant and bed. It looks so dreamy, like this:
After a few weeks the grass turns brown and is an excellent barrier to keep the weeds at bay. As the mulch slowly breaks down it releases nutrients and create biomass in the soil. Mulch also helps retain water. It is a win-win because mulching is a free solution to weeding & fertilizing (especially if you use something with a long tap root like comfrey!). It promotes a closed loop system with onsite fertility, saves water, time, money, and stress! Mulching has completely changed my relationship with my organic garden. I would encourage everyone to give it a try! What have you mulched with lately?