As fall approaches in Iowa, it’s time for property owners to start thinking about the importance of a ground cover for their landscape beds. Not only do ground covers enhance the aesthetics of your outdoor space but they also nurture the health of your plants. Moisture retention, soil temperature regulation, and effective weed suppression are just a few of the benefits that a ground cover can provide during the autumn season. When it comes to choosing the right ground cover, you have two primary options: mulch or rocks. While mulch offers an array of options to match your desired aesthetic, it usually requires annual replenishment. On the other hand, rocks provide a longer-lasting solution, only needing occasional touch-ups when your landscape beds need a refreshed appearance.

Benefits of Installing a Ground Cover in Your Landscape Beds This Fall

A ground cover is a necessity for your landscape beds, particularly in the fall, as it offers many health benefits for your plants. During this season, it becomes even more important to protect your garden's well-being. Some of the things that ground cover can help with include:

  • Moisture retention – Fall weather often brings erratic rainfall. A ground cover, such as mulch or rock, acts as a protective barrier that retains moisture in the soil. This is especially crucial for your plants, as they require consistent hydration to thrive. By keeping the soil moist, you provide a stable environment for your plants to grow.
  • Regulation of soil temperature – As temperatures drop in the fall, maintaining stable soil temperature becomes essential for plant health. Ground cover insulates the soil, preventing it from cooling down too quickly. This insulation helps root systems stay warmer, promoting healthier growth even as the weather cools.
  • Suppression of weed growth – Weeds can be particularly invasive in the fall when they compete for nutrients and resources with your plants. Ground cover provides a weed barrier, making it more difficult for weeds to take root and grow in your landscape beds.

By using a ground cover in the fall, you're not only enhancing the overall health of your plants but also making your landscape beds more resilient to seasonal challenges.

Ground covers also help protect your garden beds from erosion by stabilizing the soil and preventing it from washing away!

Mulch & Rock Are Both Great Options to Use as Ground Covers

When considering a ground cover for your landscape beds, you have two common options to choose from—mulch and rock. Each offers distinct advantages and can help you achieve the desired aesthetic style for your property.

Mulch is a popular choice for its versatility and organic appeal. It is available in various materials and it provides a natural, earthy look to your landscape. Mulch is excellent for creating a cozy, cottage-like garden or enhancing a lush, woodland aesthetic. Its rich color and texture make it a welcoming choice for fall, blending well with the changing foliage.

Rock ground coverings are known for their durability and low maintenance. Rocks come in an array of sizes, colors, and textures, allowing you to craft a modern, minimalist, or desert-themed landscape. They are especially practical if you're aiming for an arid or contemporary appearance.

Your choice between mulch and rock should align with your preferred aesthetic and the overall design of your landscape. Both options enhance curb appeal and provide the protective benefits that your garden needs.

Do ground covers need to be replenished?

Now, you might be wondering if applying a ground cover to your landscape beds is a one-time task or if you need to refresh it periodically. The answer depends on whether you choose mulch or rock. Rock ground cover doesn't usually require frequent replenishing. You only need to refresh it when it starts to look dull, typically after several years. This makes rocks a low-maintenance option that maintains its appearance over a more extended period.

Mulch, however, should be replenished annually. This helps maintain its appearance, as it may break down and decompose over time, especially during the fall and winter seasons. However, that's not a bad thing because it will add nutrients to your soil as it decomposes!

Give us a call today to schedule our mulch installation or rock installation service.

Elevate your landscape's charm and plant health this fall by taking advantage of our mulch installation or rock installation services. No matter which of these ground coverings you want to add to your landscape beds, you can be sure that we will install them correctly so that they look great and provide maximum benefits to your plants. We offer our services to residential and commercial property owners in Waukee, IA, and surrounding areas like West Des Moines and Urbandale. Call us today at (515) 664-6205 to schedule either of these services today!