How Do I Choose the Right Mulch for My Landscape?

a fine mulchWhy add mulch?

Mulch is a landscaper’s best friend because it:

  • reduces weeds;
  • improves moisture retention;
  • maintains soil temperatures; and
  • enhances the beauty of landscapes.

Mulch is basically a magic carpet for your landscape.

How do you choose the right mulch for your landscape?

Using quality mulch in your garden is one of the easiest ways to transform your landscape. Mulch comes in all shapes and sizes and flavors. When choosing a mulch there are a few factors to consider – species of wood, source, size, and color – to identify a mulch that will best fit your needs. Since the selection process can be tricky we summarized our most popular mulches with the following descriptions.


This mulch has a pleasant cedar smell that lasts a fair amount of time after spreading. Cedar is also great for repelling insects. Cedar mulch has a very slow decay process so it won’t break down quickly. Also, cedar mulch is the most resistant to artillery fungus.

  • AVAILABLE IN BULK:  Canadian Cedar is available at our Harvest New England locations in Connecticut.
  • AVAILABLE IN BAGS: Cedar Mulch Blend (2-cubic-foot bags) by Garden Pro® is available in stores in New England, the Mid-Atlantic, and Southeast.


This is a recycled mulch usually made from hardwood logs and bark. These types of mulches break down quickly and add nutrients to the soil. Natural colorants make this mulch stand out.


This mulch has a naturally rich dark color with a pleasant pine scent. Pine mulch is a slow decomposer and is often over looked. This mulch has great longevity and is relatively inexpensive!

  • AVAILABLE IN BULK: Pine Blend is one of our most popular mulches, available in New England (Connecticut). Pine Fines are an exceptional soil conditioner for acid-loving plants such as azaleas, hollies and magnolias – available in the Mid-Atlantic (Maryland, DC, Virginia).
  • AVAILABLE IN BAGS: We offer a variety of Pine- based mulches including Pine Bark Mulch in two-cubic-foot bags in New England, the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast.


This mulch has strong reddish and orange tones which add rich color to landscapes. Hemlock mulch is very aromatic. Just like cedar and pine mulch, hemlock mulches decomposes slowly so it is long lasting. Hemlock has a natural reddish look.

  • AVAILABLE IN BULK: Hemlock Mulch is available in at our Harvest New England locations.
  • AVAILABLE IN BAGS: Hemlock Mulch Blend is available in two-cubic-foot bags in New England, the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast.a course mulch

Where can I find mulch from Harvest?

Great question! In addition to the mulches listed above, we offer a variety of mulch (and soil) products throughout North America. Find a convenient location near you:

Other Common Mulch-Related Topics:

Editor’s Note: This article was originally posted as “Choosing a Mulch: Practical Beauty” in March 2014; it has been re-posted with permission by the author, Shelley Sales, with updated content, availability, links and video.

MANTS 2016 – A huge hit!

We had an excellent time at MANTS 2016 (the Mid Atlantic Nursery Trade Show), with Harvest RGI and Harvest Consumer Products connecting with vendors, customers, and landscape lovers of all sorts.  Here are a few photos from the dynamic three-day event.

Dave Devine (pink sweater) with Brad of the Country Garden Center, and Dave Lundberg in background with Ed of Akehurst Landscaping.

Dave Devine (pink) with Brad G of Country Gardens and Dave Lundberg with Ed Delaha of Akehurst Landscaping

Dave Lundberg catching a selfie with Joe of Ruppert Nurseries and Mark of Chapel Valley.

Dave Lundberg (l) Joe Proskine of Ruppert Nurseries (c) and Mark D of Chapel Valley Landscape (r)

Can you spot Dave L and Rick R of Harvest?

Dave Lundberg and Rick Roy at booth

Say, “Mulch!” Harvest RGI‘s Dave L with Jay L, Rick R, and Justin B.Dave Lundberg Jay Linahan Rick Roy and Justin Burch Compliance and Prod Dev of Harvest RGI

Jay has a moment with Melissa of Marshalls Riverbank Nurseries.Jay Linahan chatting with Melissa of Marshalls Riverbank Nursery of Salisbury MD

What a great event! Excited for this Spring. Did you want to stop by our booth but not get a chance? Send us a note! 

Harvests booth at MANTS 2016

In Bloom Every Month of the Year

During my career in the nursery industry, I was lucky to encounter an amazing wealth of experts in many parts of the United States. As a result, I am able to enjoy something in bloom during every month of the year in my home garden.


There are lots of choices for flowering plants during the spring and summer. This is the period when garden centers are full of blooming shrubs, trees and perennials. What takes more research is to extend the excitement of flowers in the fringe seasons, fall winter and early spring.


TricyrtisIn the late summer when most perennials are finishing up their flashy display, I look forward to the flowers that herald the coming of fall. Most of my landscape is dappled, dry, sandy shade, with few full sun locations. August is when such flowers as Tricyrtis, or Toad lilies, begin to bloom. These unusual flowers are easily grown to fill in the empty patches where spring bulbs have gone dormant.

While most people have to buy replacement fall mums every year, there are varieties that are truly perennial. I have a sunny spot that is planted with Montauk Daisy, a somewhat woody shrub that blooms in the mum season with white Shasta Daisy style flowers. Cut it back in winter to about 18” and by bloom time it will likely be 4’ across and 3’ tall.


camelliasBack in the woods, with an eastern exposure, the fall Camellias begin blooming in October, usually lasting until Christmas or later except when an early winter cold snap freezes the last of the buds and blooms. In some of the milder winters, spring Camellias begin blooming just as the fall bloomers are finishing. (Photo courtesy

Also in October, hardy cyclamens come out of dormancy and grow new leaves that usually persist through winter. These tropical looking perennial bulbs begin blooming in February and last about 2 months. Happy in part shade, these plants make small colonies, spreading by seed and developing corms that can grow as big as a dinner plate over time. Two species are the most available: Cyclamen coum and Cyclamen hederifolium. Coum begins blooming earlier than hederifolium.


Christmas rose, or Helleborus niger begins its bloom season in late December or early January, with its flowers preceding the new leaves. Flowers are usually white or creamy green. Its cousin, the Lenten rose or helleborus orientalis, is named because it flowers during Lent. It has a wider array of flower colors, from charcoal black, to burgundy to pink, yellow and white. Flowers can be double, semi double or single. The spent flowers stay attractive long after the color fades. Cut the old foliage back before new flowers emerge.

About the Author

Jim McFall manages accounts and inventory for Harvest Power out of the Pittsville, MD location. He says, “I’m in Delaware, about 5 miles inland from the ocean and about 2 miles from the Indian River Bay, so those water bodies help to moderate temperature extremes in both summer and winter. It is weather zone 7b. Southern Delaware climate, topography and soil structure is different than northern Delaware.”

Harvest RGI Accepted to Maryland Green Registry

Maryland Green Registry DecalRecently Harvest RGI – our operations that serve the mid-atlantic region including Baltimore / Washington / Maryland / Northern Virginia corridor – was accepted to the Maryland Green Registry. By meeting a set of criteria we have joined an elite set of businesses that meet standards for the following categories:

  • Environmentally Preferable Products and Services
  • Energy Efficiency
  • Efficient Business Travel
  • Fleet Vehicles
  • Water Conservation
  • Stormwater Management and Site Design

Congrats!!  Interested in supporting a sustainable business while meeting your needs for green waste recycling or mulches, compost and soil blend products? Contact Harvest RGI in Woodbine MD today.