Microplastics

Homeowner sparks a debate by sharing photos of a common landscaping mistake – The Cool Down

Mulch is useful around the home and garden, providing soil with nutrients, moisture, warmth, and drainage. 

However, DIY landscapers have different opinions about what type of mulch is best and how to use it to control weeds.

One homeowner posted on Reddit about using wood chip mulch a year ago and being faced with unmanageable weeds and invading grass. But what the homeowner did next sparked debate among followers of the r/landscaping subreddit.

Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

“Dug it all out, placed sheets and got new rubber mulch,” the original poster wrote. “Also placed down cement blocks for trash bins. Bought this as my first house a year ago. Learning as I go.”

Redditors were quick to criticize the homeowner’s new strategy in the comments, sharing that rubber mulch is not good for the soil and can impact plants’ ability to get water.

A Redditor pointed out that microplastics shed from rubber mulch. Microplastics are increasingly concerning in our world today as they infiltrate our lives through the foods we eat, clothes we wear, and landscaping strategies we choose.

Recent research shows that exposure to microplastics is linked to neurodegenerative diseases, fertility issues, cancer, and many other health conditions.

Meanwhile, a more natural lawn reduces the chemicals and toxins you are exposed to daily, allowing you to live a healthier life with fewer disease risks. 

“Rubber mulch has awful chemicals from tires,” one commenter wrote. “Probably the most annoying stuff to deal with too. Light enough to be blown around by a blower, doesn’t degrade naturally, and once it’s out, it’s all over your yard.”

Other Redditors were more encouraging and offered helpful suggestions to improve the landscaping.

“You definitely have the right idea touching up stuff and it looks very neat/clean/well done!” a Redditor wrote. “If you want to keep adding plants, some low-lying ground covers or short perennial flowers/grasses interspersed would probably look nice!”

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