Will creeping phlox grow on top of mulch?

Answered by Cody Janus

Creeping phlox can grow on top of mulch. In fact, adding mulch can provide several benefits for creeping phlox and other groundcovers that spread by stolons. Allow me to explain in detail.

First of all, mulch can help retain moisture in the soil, which is crucial for the healthy growth of creeping phlox. By creating a barrier between the soil surface and the air, mulch helps prevent evaporation, keeping the soil moist for longer periods of time. This is particularly important during hot and dry periods when the soil can quickly dry out.

In addition to moisture retention, mulch also acts as an insulator, protecting the roots of creeping phlox from extreme temperature fluctuations. This is especially beneficial during winter when the soil can freeze and thaw repeatedly. The layer of mulch acts as a buffer, providing some insulation and protecting the shallow roots of the groundcover.

Moreover, mulch helps suppress weed growth around creeping phlox. Weeds can compete with the groundcover for nutrients, water, and sunlight, hindering its growth. By placing a layer of mulch around the plants, you create a physical barrier that inhibits weed germination and growth. This allows the creeping phlox to thrive without the competition from unwanted plants.

Furthermore, the organic matter in the mulch gradually breaks down over time, enriching the soil with nutrients. As the mulch decomposes, it releases nutrients into the soil, providing a steady supply of organic matter that benefits the creeping phlox and enhances its growth. This is particularly advantageous for groundcovers like foamflower, creeping phlox, and wild strawberry, which spread by stolons and can benefit from the extra organic matter.

When applying mulch around creeping phlox, it is important to avoid piling it up too high against the stems or crowns of the plants. This can lead to moisture retention around the base of the plants, potentially causing rot or other issues. Instead, spread a layer of mulch around the plants, ensuring that the stems and crowns remain exposed and can breathe.

Yes, creeping phlox can grow on top of mulch. In fact, adding mulch can provide various benefits for the groundcover, such as moisture retention, temperature insulation, weed suppression, and nutrient enrichment. So go ahead and mulch around your creeping phlox to create an ideal environment for its growth and spread.