Most mulches play some role in the protection and improvement of the site. Crushed pine needles, however helps provide favorable growing conditions and stimulates healthy plant development.
Benefits of using pine needle mulch include
*Insulates tender roots from extreme temperature swings
*Conserves soil moisture by reducing water evaporation and moisture loss.
*Protects against soil compaction by reducing the rain impact on soil surface.
*Aides in promoting favorable soil tilts for healthy root growth.
*Pine needles create a chemically balanced bed for acid loving plants such as azaleas, roses, camellias.
*Pine needles remain loose. Loose mulch allows water to infiltrate readily into the soil and avoids wasteful water runoff of irrigation.
*Air pockets in mulch, however, help prevent it from remaining excessively wet and damaging roots.
Crushed pine needle mulch also provides an effective barrier against soil born diseases.
As pine needle mulch slowly breaks down, it releases organic matter. Over time, this organic matter improves soil texture by allowing air to infiltrate the soil and encouraging beneficial soil micro organisms. There is a direct nutrient value in the mulch, but a variety of physical properties give it advantages over other organic mulches.