If you’ve spent much time landscaping, you know that there are two primary objectives when it comes to plants: keeping the plants you want in your landscape alive and keeping everything else out. Luckily rubber mulch helps with both of these.
Keeping plants you want in your landscape alive.
Now, don’t hear us saying that if you use rubber mulch in your landscape that your plants will live forever… that’s simply not true. But rubber mulch has a unique advantage over wood mulch in that it doesn’t absorb water. This means that when your plants receive water, either naturally or from an irrigation system, that water percolates directly through the rubber mulch and into the roots of your plants. Furthermore, plants are insulated by the rubber mulch on the top helping to prevent evaporation. It’s a much better system than traditional wood mulch that absorbs a solid chuck of the water your plants receive allowing it to evaporate off before it’s ever able to benefit your plants.
Keeping everything else out.
Weed prevention is a big deal with any landscape. You don’t want those pesky things anywhere near your beautiful plants. Most landscapes utilize a weed barrier system (placing a layer of weed barrier fabric between the ground and the mulch) to protect against this problem. The trouble with this system is that wood mulch decomposes over time leaving a layer or soil on top of the weed barrier that weeds can take root in. Some wood mulch is fine enough that weeds can take root directly in the mulch.
Rubber mulch solves this problem because it doesn’t decompose and it stays very dry. When unwanted plant seeds find their way into your landscape bed they get caught up in the rubber mulch which drys them out and prevents them from germinating. Rubber mulch also allows the weed barrier to do it’s job of preventing weed seeds from reaching the soil by not eventually producing soil on top of the weed barrier. All of that to say, it’s a pretty awesome weed prevention system.