How to Mulch Around The House? 7 Steps

Share on:

So, you’ve decided to mulch around your house. What’s more, why wouldn’t you? Mulch, after all, prevents weeds, keeps plants healthy, and looks great! Mulch around your house improves the appearance of foundation plants and reduces weeds, but it may also contain bugs. Mulch may be a fire threat if you live in a region where wildfires are common.

This article will discuss How to mulch around the house, which is free from all dangers.

How to Put Mulch Around The House? Steps Explained

1. Must Know All Threats

Before proceeding, you should weigh the hazards of mulching around your home’s foundation. There are two main risk factors that you should think of which are as follows:

Fire Problem

There’s always the possibility of the mulch catching fire when they become too much dry.

You should be aware of the hazard if you live in a wildfire-prone location.


If you’re concerned about flames, mulch manufactured from less fire-prone wood is available. Cocoa shells, pine bark nuggets and shredded hardwood are examples of wood mulch you can use that does not catch fire. You can also sprinkle some water on it to make it moist.

Pests and Insects

You may come to the question that “does mulch next to house cause termite?”

Yes, mulch can thrive insects and pests to many extents.

Mulch has a tendency to harbor termites (Isoptera)) and other insects, which can cause damage in your wooden home. Termites thrive in the dampness of mulch and feed on its cellulose content.

The mulch protects them from the weather, allowing them to flourish. Termites also like to hide under mulch to sneak into your home via wooden framework inviting more insect invasion.


To tackle this problem, there are termite-resistant mulches, such as cypress, cedarwood, mulch that comes from the heartwood of cypress, mucalyptus, southern tidewater red cypress, california redwood and melaleuca that you should use. Also, it’s recommended that you should leave a one-foot-wide strip of soil between your home and your mulch or 6 inches of space or more between mulch and home structure.

2. Select The Right Mulch For Your House

As explained above, you should consider all risks before selecting your mulch. Few factors that you can not skip to select mulch are listed below:

  • Mulch color combination with house
  • Mulch is organic or not
  • Mulch resists pests or not
  • Mulch is inflammable or not

By considering the above factors, you can should select your mulch.

The best mulch you can lay down around your house would be Wood chips.

Wood mulch is much more natural and comfortable for the plants. Most gardeners prefer wood mulch due to its appearance and texture. It makes the garden look green for longer and is easy to conceal weeds when put in place. It is also used in different parts of the yard and garden to create different effects. It is easy to spread, less expensive than some other mulches and doesn’t have the odor that some of the organic mulches have.

However OTHER OPTIONS you can try are:

Pine needles: If you have plants that thrive in acidic soil, pine needles are the affordable option. This can be done simply by taking a large pile of them to change the PH level of your soil for a unique look and cost-effective method.

Straw Mulch: Straw mulch is a common mulch for people to use during cold weather and offers insulation against the ground. Because it’s free of twigs, it works well as bedding for ruminants. It’s relatively inexpensive compared to other types of mulch, which makes it easier on your budget if you frequently have to buy mulch.

Gravel or rocks: Heavier mulches, like rocks and gravel, do not blow away or move easily. They also will not decompose, catch fire or fade as quickly as other kinds of mulch.

Rubber mulch: Mulch made from recycled rubber dreadlocks can last for decades, doesn’t decompose, and can come in different color variations.

2. Prepare Soil for Mulch

While the mulch helps keep weeds at bay, starting with a weed-free space is crucial. Remove any weeds from the area you wish to mulch near your house. To prevent regrowth, dig out the weeds at the root. Get rid of any dead weeds in the area. If plants are already growing near the home, trim them if necessary. Clear the garbage and clipped branches.

3. Slope the Soil for Mulch

The earth around the foundation should slope away from it. This directs water away from your foundation rather than pooling close to it. Build up the soil slightly at the foundation and construct a gradual slope downhill toward the yard if the earth slopes down toward the house or is flat. Grading around house to 5% slope is a good practice. Ideally, the ground should drop one inch for every one foot that you move away from the house for the first 5-to-10 feet around your home.

At least 6 inches of the foundation should be visible above the earth line to establish a buffer between the natural structure and the siding, stucco, or other external finish of the house so it doesn’t sit too close to termites that may be present in the soil. Mulch provides termites with moisture and safety.

4. Cover the Mulch Area

A layer of weed protection applied to the soil aids the mulch in controlling undesirable growth. To suffocate potential weeds, use layers of newspaper or cardboard as the foundation material. Alternatively, put landscaping cloth beneath the mulch as a long-term option to keep weeds at bay.

To prevent weeds from sprouting in the gaps, the borders should overlap. If the mulched area is also a planting bed, you may cut holes in any of these foundation materials for plants.

5. Add Mulch Barrier

This is an optional step that your particular preferences will determine. If you’re concerned about the mulch going into your lawn, create a barrier between the grass and the garden bed. A brick or stone walkway and a plastic or metal fence are other possibilities to explore.

You could wish to use a similar barrier between the mulch and the foundation of your house. If you’re worried about termites, this is a fantastic idea since it creates a barrier between the mulch and the foundation. But it will do it in an aesthetically pleasing manner.

6. Must Reduce Fire Risk Due to Mulch

The finest mulch for around the home is one that decreases the danger of fire. Large pieces of mulch take longer to burn than fine or stringy mulch. Keep combustible mulches such as wood or bark at least 3 to 5 feet away from home when feasible.

Gravel or colourful rocks may be used as a ground cover in the vicinity of the house without posing a fire hazard. If a fire does reach the region, organic mulch that is more profound than 2 inches may be more difficult to extinguish.

7. Start Mulching Around Your Houses

Now that all the right conditions are in place, you can start adding the mulch. The kind of mulch determines the thickness of mulch or pebbles around the home. According to Researcher, roughly 2 inches of fine mulch is sufficient. You may mulch up to 4 inches deep with more significant bits of mulch, such as larger wood pieces or boulders.

If there is mulch already laid then you can remove first layer of old mulch and lay down new mulch over old mulch.

Termites are less likely to access the home if there is a 12-inch bare ground between the foundation and the mulch. Spread the mulch in a uniform layer using a shovel or rake.

10 Key Points to Remember When Mulching – Explained in the Video Below:

Is It Ok to Put Mulch Around Your House?

Mulching around the house is great as it gives the great look to your house. Your house may be white, grey, or brick red. Mulch really keeps its look more appealing and side by side giving its tremendous benefits to your soil and plants.

The benefits of mulching around the house are explained below:

  • Mulch will keep weeds at bay, preserve moisture in the soil for your plants, and prevent dirt from washing away or spilling on your walls.
  • When compared to pebbles, mulch is the most cost-effective solution. It is the cheapest mulch available, but it will need to be replenished every six months as it decomposes.
  • Over time, mulch will help to enhance the soil. Soil bacteria and worms will break it down, adding organic matter to the ground.
  • For a remarkable appearance around your property, mulch may produce a vivid display of annual flowers or grow long-lasting bushes.


For mulching around your house, you must uproot the weeds, slop the soil, add barriers to keep weeds out, and add borders; after this, add 4 inches of deep mulch on the ground.

I hope this article has cleared up all your confusion about mulch around the house. If you have any questions, kindly tell me in the comment box. Thank you!

Photo of author


After doing my master’s in agriculture, I went on with this field for more than 15 years because I love working in green. I have experienced using modern machinery and techniques that can help farmers and landscapers to achieve something great. My goal will be to deliver you the best reviews and information to make the right decision.

Leave a Comment