When most people think of mulch, they picture the ground or shredded pieces of wood that are generally placed on top of a garden bed. But while wood mulch is a very common kind of mulch, it is not the only option. Some homeowners instead choose to cover their garden beds in crushed limestone. Here are a few reasons why crushed limestone can be a good choice.
1. Limestone helps keep the soil pH higher.
Most plants like to grow in soil that is slightly basic, or in other words, has a pH above 7.0. If you ever test your soil and find it to be too acidic -- or below a pH of 7.0 -- a gardening expert would recommend adding lime to the soil to raise the pH. If you mulch your garden bed in crushed limestone, then every time it rains, tiny amounts of limestone are going to be washed down into the dirt. This will help keep your soil pH higher, which will help make sure your plants grow healthy and strong.
2. Limestone does not need to be replaced very often.
Wood mulch breaks down pretty quickly; so do pine needles and other types of organic mulch. As a result, you will need to add new mulch to the garden every year, if not twice a year. This is not the case with limestone. It breaks down very, very slowly, so once it is in place, you should not have to add any more. It costs more up-front than wood mulch, but it has a much longer lifespan.
3. Limestone keeps weeds down.
Wood mulch does help dissuade weeds from growing, but stubborn weeds can still push up past it. Limestone is a lot heavier, and growing weeds cannot just push it aside. As a result, you will have to do less weeding when you have limestone mulch in place. You won't have to use as many weed-killing sprays, which is better for the planet.
4. Limestone slows down erosion.
The weight of the stone serves to compact the soil somewhat, so water flowing over the dirt does not erode it as much. Your garden beds won't wash away as much with limestone in place, so you don't have to always rebuild them and add dirt.
If you like the look of limestone on your gardens, go ahead and put some in place! This stone offers a lot of advantages as a mulch product.