How to Use Cypress Mulch


As the name suggests, cypress mulch is made out of the shredded wood of the cypress tree. And although its benefits are often exaggerated, cypress mulch does have benefits. It is light enough in color to dye, it is long-lasting and it returns vital nutrients to the soil as it decomposes. But avoid the temptation to over-apply this beneficial garden tool. A 2- to 4-inch layer is as much as any plant or tree needs to enjoy the benefits of cypress mulch.

Step 1

Spread cypress mulch around trees and plants to stabilize the soil's temperature, increase moisture retention, fertilize the soil and cut down on weed competition.

Step 2

Spray your cypress mulch with a water-soluble, vegetable-based dye to make it the color of your choosing.

Step 3

Replace your cypress mulch only when necessary. Keep the mulch level around your plants at 2 to 4 inches. Only add mulch when this level shrinks as the cypress mulch biodegrades. Avoid the temptation to top dress your cypress mulch annually. If you wish to annually refresh your existing cypress mulch's appearance, simply rake it to turn it and re-dye it if necessary.

Tips and Warnings

  • Some states restrict the use of cypress mulch to help prevent the deforestation of cypress wetlands. While many gardeners swear by it, there is no scientific evidence to prove that cypress mulch repels insects.

Things You'll Need

  • Rake
  • Mulch dye


  • Suncoast Native Plant Society: Why Kill a Tree to Grow a Flower?
  • Ohio State University: Mulching Landscape Plants
Keywords: cypress mulch, use mulch, how to mulch

About this Author

Emma Gin is a freelance writer who specializes in green, healthy and smart living. She is currently working on developing a weight-loss website that focuses on community and re-education. Gin is also working on a collection of short stories, because she knows what they say about idle hands.