Rental Mulching Ideas – Information On Mulch Options For Renters

Gardener Placing Mulch Around Yellow Flowers
mulch renter
(Image credit: ronstik)

One downside to renting is that you may not have full control over your outdoor space. For a gardener this can be frustrating. Most landlords and owners will be thrilled, however, if you want to help beautify and maintain some of the landscaping. For renter mulching ideas, you’ll want some easy, low cost options.

Mulch Landscaping Ideas for Renters

Mulching is useful for many reasons: it keeps moisture in the soil, warms the soil, keeps down weeds, and more. If you don’t own your property though, mulching can be a big chore and expense that provides little return on your investment. That doesn’t mean you can’t use and benefit from mulch. Here are some things to keep in mind when using mulch for rental properties:

  • Use mulch in smaller spaces, like containers or raised beds. Only purchase mulch yourself for areas over which you have personal control.
  • For larger beds in common areas, ask your landlord to buy mulch, even if you are willing to do most of the leg work.
  • Point out to hesitant landlords that mulching will make the space more attractive and reduce the need for maintenance.
  • Watch out for mulch types that may be toxic to animals or painful to walk on for people and pets sharing common areas.

Best Mulch Options for Renters

If you can convince your landlord to make a purchase of mulch for your common areas, be ready with the pros and cons of some of the different types of mulch:

  • Wood chips - Wood chips are one of the most common types of mulch. It looks attractive and tidy but won’t keep weeds down as well as others. Cedar and cypress cost more but help deter insects. It needs replenishing every few years.
  • Fabric barriers - A weed barrier is very good at preventing weed growth, which means less maintenance. It is unattractive, though, unless you cover it with soil or another type of mulch.
  • Gravel - Gravel can be a very attractive type of mulch and it usually requires less ongoing maintenance than wood chip mulch. However, the initial effort to put it in is serious. It takes some major muscle. Also, you’ll struggle to get new plants in with gravel mulch.
Mary Ellen Ellis

Mary Ellen Ellis has been gardening for over 20 years. With degrees in Chemistry and Biology, Mary Ellen's specialties are flowers, native plants, and herbs.