• Home Home

Landscaping expert issues warning against 'terrible' common yard material: 'It's just … gross'

"It bakes in the sun because it's a dark color."

"It bakes in the sun because it’s a dark color."

Photo Credit: TikTok

A landscaping company is on a mission to teach people how to properly mulch their beloved gardens.

Summit Lawns (@summitlawns) of Nebraska has a TikTok page full of mulching tips. One of the latest pitted rubber mulch against organic mulch, and there was a clear winner.

@summitlawns Don't USE Rubber Mulch! #mulch #lawn #lawncare #leaves #fyp ♬ original sound - Summit Lawns

"Rubber mulch is terrible," the creator says. "Don't use it. Use the real stuff. Use the fresh stuff."

"Why is it a pain? Why is it no good?" the TikToker asks. "Well, it's rubber mulch. It's not biodegradable. It doesn't break down like wood mulch does, which means if you stuck it in your beds, it's going to be there until it either comes out and it's in your lawn when you're raking leaves — or it's going to be there forever."

There's already enough pollution in the environment to add more with this toxic substance, which leaches forever chemicals and other toxins. Similar to crumb rubber, it degrades slowly — while off-gasing volatile organic compounds and polyaromatic hydrocarbons, which irritate respiratory passages, damage the central nervous system, and cause depression.

Natural wood mulch breaks down and becomes nutrients for your soil, and it suppresses weeds just as well, if not better. It's also chemical-free, which is especially important if you're growing your own food. You can also try to make your own mulch with the organic matter already produced by your yard, including leaves, pine needles, and similar detritus.

Other ways to maintain unadulterated landscapes and help the environment, wildlife, and even the human food supply include planting native species, rewilding your yard, and xeriscaping.

These methods can also save you money — does anyone need hundreds of dollars a year? — on your water bills and time since they don't require as much work.

So, just say no to rubber mulch.

"It bakes in the sun because it's a dark color, and it's just kind of gross," the creator concludes. "I'd much rather use an organic material around the plants that I care about than rubber."

A commenter added another plus: "I love a fresh mulch, really [complements] the house and the lawn."

Join our free newsletter for easy tips to save more, waste less, and help yourself while helping the planet.

Cool Divider