I have several garden areas that I am looking to re-mulch. I've always used
a hardwood mulch which has been brown and have in general been satisified.
I've recently seen some red cedar mulch (not color enhanced cedar, but
regular color red cedar) that says it is naturally insect resistant and its
a light brown color with a hint of red. I'm also told that it breaks down a
bit faster than the hardwood mulch. I do not use purposefully composted
hardwood mulch - if that makes sense. It sounds like the red cedar might be
a decent one to try and get some benefit of insect resistance - not that I
am expecting it will halt all insects anywhere in the yard. I've also seen
some Hemlock mulch which is light brown with probably a bit more of a hint
of red than the cedar. I'm told it is naturally insect resistant as well,
but it offers the benefit of breaking down much, much quicker than hardwood
and much quicker than cedar.
I am in the Milwaukee, WI area. Does anyone have any experiences or feedback
with hardwood vs red cedar vs hemlock? The color of all three is fine with
me. The hardwood has an ok scent and the cedar and hemlock I think have a
better scent. The cedar and hemlock offering some insect resistance sounds
like it would be good - again, I don't expect it to be a whole yard insect
repellent, but it seems like it would be a beneit. All is shredded, but the
hemlock is shredded a bit finer, which seems like a benefit as well.
Finally, the hemlock breaking down the quickest seems like it would return
nutrients to the soil the faster, hence another benefit. Any comments?
Cost wise - hardwood will run me $20-$25 a yard, red cedar $40-$50 a yard,
and hemlock $40-$45 a yard. I am only getting about 5 yards this year, so
while cost is a factor, its $100-$125 difference roughly in the 5 yard area.
So, any help you can offer to help me make up my mind would be appreciated!
Overall, I'm leaning towards the hemlock this year.