Landscapers know that using mulch around the landscape can provide numerous benefits to your garden plants. Not only can this be an attractive addition to the garden, but adding mulch can significantly reduce the amount of time you spend on routine maintenance. By blocking out light, mulch suffocates weeds; thus, knocking out your weeding chores. Mulch retains moisture as well, limiting the need for constant watering. During periods of heavy rain, mulch can help prevent soil erosion by keeping the soil firmly in place rather than allowing it to wash away. Furthermore, mulch aids in the prevention of soil splashing onto plants. Mulch helps to keep your plants cool during those hot spells and insulates plants in the cold months of winter. Best of all, organic mulches, such as bark or pine needles, can also improve the soil. As these types of mulches begin to break down, nutrients are slowly added to the soil, encouraging healthier plant growth and even beneficial insects, like earthworms.