This Colorful Mulch Alternative Is Great For Plants That Thrive In Drier Conditions

Having thousands of glass pieces in your soil sounds like a nightmare — one that leads to cutting your green thumb. However, it can actually be a benefit for your garden. We're not talking about random shards of broken bottles. We're talking about recycled tumbled glass. The latter is an inorganic mulch alternative repurposed from old glass products like windows and jars. The pieces resemble smooth, colorful pebbles and not only add visual appeal to your outdoor space but also help plants that favor dry conditions.

Choosing the best type of mulch for your garden will depend on the plants in your outdoor space and your local climate. For greenery that thrives in dry, rocky, or sandy soil, glass mulch can be a great alternative to organic mulches that retain too much water for these plants. Recycled tumbled glass helps reduce waste in landfills, repels pests, and keeps soil dry. Plus, some recycling centers give away the glass spread for free.

Benefits of recycled tumbled glass

Recycled tumbled glass has similar benefits to traditional organic mulch made from plant matter like grass or tree bark. The glass can prevent weeds, as it blocks out the sunlight these unwanted plants need to grow, and it stops soil erosion, as the top layer keeps the soil in place. However, where standard mulch would decompose over time, recycled tumbled glass is long-lasting. It is a permanent solution to border gardens and to help protect the soil. Glass also traps heat and increases the temperature of the soil, which can keep your plants flourishing after the weather gets cold. The material is reflective, too, gifting the greenery with extra sunlight.

Recycled tumbled glass is ideal for drought-resistant plants that thrive without much water. It doesn't retain water like other mulches, so there's less risk of these plant roots getting waterlogged. It doesn't attract pests either like mulch made from plant matter can, so you don't have to worry about extra bugs. Tumbled glass makes a better mulch alternative than stone, which retains a lot of heat to the point of risking the plant's health, and rubber, which can transfer harmful chemicals into the ground. The gorgeous pebbles are also easy to incorporate within your garden.

How to add glass mulch in your landscape

To use recycled tumbled glass in your outdoor space, simply treat it like regular mulch. A major difference is that you'll have to lay a barrier of landscaping fabric on top of the soil before spreading the mulch alternative because, over time, the glass pieces can plunge into the ground. Although the tumbled glass is rounded smooth, it is best to wear gloves when handling the pebbles due to the possibility a few pieces might still have sharp edges.

When it comes to the application, you want a layer 2 to 4 inches thick of recycled tumbled glass to reap all of its soil-warming and weed-preventing benefits. It's safe to apply at the base of your plants and the entire garden bed. You can also add glass mulch for your potted plants. First, cut the landscaping fabric to fit the planter before layering the recycled glass. Even if you don't have plants. You can sprinkle the colorful glass along the edge of your lawn, walkway, or porch to increase your home's curb appeal.