Does Mulch Attract Termites?

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Does Mulch Attract Termites?

If you are into landscaping and handling your own outdoor maintenance, the chances are good that you are aware of the pests that can wreak havoc on your property. Pests can derail your landscaping goals and make it difficult to keep your property looking good, but that doesn’t mean you have to let them. The more you can learn about certain pests that may impact your landscaping, the better suited you will be to deal with them should they show up.

Without a doubt, one of the most serious pest problems to deal with is termites. These tiny critters love to feast on wood and can actually cause structural damage to your house if you let them go unchecked. Many landscapers end up wondering whether or not mulch, which is one of the most useful landscaping products to choose for your property, invites termites to call your landscaping home. Since some types of mulch are made of wood, it’s certainly a valid question. We are going to answer this question below and provide you with some treatment plans that should termites show up on your property. If you are interested in purchasing the best landscaping products for your property, reach out to Cal Blend Soils today.

Termites and Mulch – A Match Made in Heaven?

Termites are an invasive species of insects that can be very destructive if they infest your landscaping. They love to feast on wood and other substances that contain cellulose. Termites will construct colonies under the ground and require certain levels of moisture to survive. This is why it’s important to consider whether or not mulch causes termites. The answer is pretty straightforward – mulch does not cause termites. Even if you have purchased mulch that is made out of wood, it won’t necessarily attract termites directly. Termites are not known to thrive in piles of mulch since they usually tunnel through the Earth and are present in the ground before you lay down mulch if you have them.

However, there are certain precautions you should take when laying down mulch on your property just in case. If you spread mulch over three inches thick, it essentially creates a nice habitat for termites and other pests. This is because the layer of mulch traps moisture and heat close to the soil. That means termites can use a thick layer of mulch as shelter from the outside weather. Keep that in mind as you lay down your mulch and try to avoid laying it down too thick.

If you really want to avoid termite issues, make sure when you lay down mulch that it doesn’t touch the structure of your home. This includes door frames and wood foundations. You can also think about using gravel between your flowerbeds and the walls of your house to keep them away from your house. You can even choose certain types of mulch like redwood and cypress which contain certain resins that will repel termites. It’s all about planning ahead and creating a termite-proof landscape.

Avoiding Termites

Everyone wants to avoid termites on their property, which is why we’ve put together a few quick tips below about how to keep them away from your land.

1. Avoid Spraying Pesticides on Your Mulch

We know how valuable mulch can be for your soil and plants. As it decomposes, it adds vital nutrients to the soil and helps to promote beneficial organisms on your property. You might be tempted to spray down your mulch with pesticides before you add it to your landscape as a means of keeping termites out. However, this is a bad idea, as it can put harmful chemicals directly into the soil. Pesticides are designed to kill, which is why you should avoid spraying it on your mulch at all costs.

2. Choose Termite-Resistant Mulch

As we mentioned earlier, you can actually avoid dealing with termites by choosing types of mulch that are termite-resistant. Some of the types of wood that mulch is made from have special chemicals that prevent termites from getting the nutrition they need to expand. Cypress heartwood is one example, along with cedar mulch. Choose wisely when it comes to mulch and make sure you grab a mulch that is termite-resistant if you are looking for extra reassurance. If you are interested in high-quality mulch at great prices, reach out to Cal Blend Soils today. We even offer discounts on bulk purchases so that you can get the best value on the market.

3. Lay Mulch Strategically

Another way to avoid termites when you are applying mulch to your landscaping is to lay it down strategically. That means maintaining a low mulch buffer area around the perimeter of your house to prevent termites from forming bridges. You might even want to avoid laying mulch down near the perimeter of your house altogether. Also, try to keep the perimeter area of your home dry and avoid watering too close the foundation. The idea is to avoid creating an environment that helps termites flourish.

Mulch and Termites

We know that using mulch on your property can provide a lot of different benefits. Now that we’ve clarified that mulch is not typically known to contain termites, all you need to do is focus on is laying down your mulch in a way that doesn’t provide termites with the moist and humid environment they need to thrive. This is particularly important if you live in an area where termites are a known concern or if you have dealt with termites on your property before. It’s usually best to be cautious if you think that termites could come into the equation.

We hope this article has provided you with some valuable information and helped you to better understand the relationship between termites and mulch. As a reminder, if you are interested in purchasing mulch for your landscaping, reach out to Cal Blend Soils today.