Termite Resistant Mulsh
Many people use mulsh to landscape their property and make it look better, but is there a termite resistant mulsh on the market that can cause these invading pests to stay away from your home? Landscape mulshes are commonly used to provide many benefits including water and soil conservation, weed control, soil temperature buffering, and soil organic matter improvement. These benefits and the increasing interest in utilizing yard waste have resulted in a wide array of mulshes being used for weed and water management and for decorative purposes around houses. Recently, questions have been raised about organic mulches being possible attractants to termites and whether there is a termite resistant mulsh that can be developed.
Since mulsh is most often made of wood and compost items, it seems natural that termites will be attracted to them as a food source. However, a specific study was done using various breeds of termites and what mulshes they are attracted to in order to find a termite resistant mulsh. One of the findings of this study – conducted in 1999 showed that the termites tended to stay away from cypress and redwood mulshes.
There were two other woods that proved to be a termite resistant mulsh. The melaleuca wood mulsh was not eated by the termites at all. Cypress heartwood was found to be extremely resistant to termite damage and the termites stayed away from this type of mulsh as well.
If you want to have a termite resistant mulsh as part of your landscaping program, look for those made with cypress and redwood. Place a protective piece of black landscaping plastic on the soil before applying the mulch because termites live in the soil and can come up into the mulch without the plastic being laid down. If you are applying the mulsh around your home, choose one like melaleuca to place closest to the house since that’s the mulsh termites least prefer. It might be a good idea to consider stone instead of mulsh, however.
Even though stone might be more expensive to landscape with, at least that way you won’t tempt the termites to come for a visit. Mulsh is a nice addition to a landscaped yard, so look for a termite resistant mulsh made of the woods listed above so that they aren’t as tempted to eat through it. Of course, please realize that there is no such thing as a one hundred percent termite resistant mulsh. Just pick one that will keep them away and use the plastic to keep the termites in the soil and out of your house.