Dan Gill, LSU AgCenter horticulturist
Mulching is an easy-to-do labor-saving gardening technique that all gardeners should take advantage of. A mulch is a material, usually organic but sometimes inorganic, we use to cover the soil surface around plants. Mulching beds is an important part of sustainable landscaping.
Organic mulches, such as leaves, chopped leaves, pine straw, ground pine bark, dry grass clippings and newspaper, are all derived from once-living materials. They are popular for their ease of use, attractive appearance (except for newspaper) and because, as they decompose, they add beneficial organic matter to the soil. They are the most popular mulches.
Read more here: Mulch, mulch and more mulch.