Using Mulch to Deter Pests

May 22, 2015 | Insects & Pests, Lawn Care Tips

All Turf Lawn Care knows exactly how to give your lawn what it needs to grow into a gorgeous green space. However, sometimes homeowners want to do certain landscaping chores themselves. Mulching around plants and in flower beds is one of the typical activities homeowners prefer to do themselves, but did you know that you can actually prevent certain pests from bothering your landscape, just by the type of mulch you decide to use?

DIY Mulch Pest Prevention

There are a variety of mulches homeowners can choose from, but aside from aesthetics, also consider which pests it may prevent from coming around your carefully crafted landscape.

Straw or Cocoa Bean Shells

Straw mulches can help prevent the spread of plant diseases and fungus in your garden. It can also prevent beetles from laying eggs and increasing their numbers in your landscape. The cocoa bean shells offer a nice look, pleasing fragrance (chocolate), and keep away slugs and termites from your plants. However, this mulch SHOULD NOT be used if you have small children or own pets (dogs in particular).

Organic Mulches

Examples of organic mulches include pine straw, leaves, bark, nut shells, and grass. Basically, these are materials created by nature (that are able to be broken down by nature), and are not made by man. While using organic mulch, you may notice more bugs around; however, many bugs attracted to healthy soil, and plants are not ‘bad bugs.’ They are the ‘good bugs’ that will eat up the pests for you. If the bad bugs should take over, then organic insecticide can be used.

Cedar and Cypress

Washington State University has reported that cedar chips, in particular, are most effective in repelling (sometimes even killing) termites, clothing-eating moths, carpet beetles, cockroaches and certain ant species. Cedar and Cypress wood chips are both excellent mulches because their wood is resistant to decay, though their colors will fade to gray eventually.


Pebbles, Lava Rock, Seashells, Plastic or Rubber

Considered an inorganic mulch, as this material does not break down in nature; these materials may also prevent certain bugs. However, they will not give your plants or soil any extra nutrients as some of the natural mulches will.

All Turf Lawn Care

For more information about mulching your landscape, please contact our friendly lawn care experts at All Turf Lawn Care today. We look forward to speaking with you!

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