I am not a big fan of mulching, but I do it because it has to be done. And I don't try and coordinate the color of mulch with any other part of the house. So, I'm not going to go out and get that designer-color shredded mulch that disintegrates within a year, making it necessary to re-mulch over and over again. All I want are those large brown pine nuggets chips that take four score and seven years to brake down into soil, because I only want to mulch the beds once. I don't care if they fade in the sun. It's soil. It's not carpet. The garden is about the plants, after all. You've got to keep your eye on the ball.
But large pine nugget mulch seems to be a hard thing to come by at this time of the year. Fall gardeners have snapped it up and apparently garden center vendors don't reorder it until spring. I nabbed Gardens of Babylon's last two bags of the largies two weeks ago (I was also able to finagle a broken bag of largies that they found this past weekend). I relieved Ray's (12South) of their last bag last week. The Home Depot at 100 Oaks reports that they are out of largies, and Berry Hill's little gardening center never had them.
I am considering going outside of my 5-mile gardening shopping radius or even into Green Hills (oh, gawd!) to see if I can find more, because I really don't relish the last resort of patching with mini-nuggets. I hate lightweights. They may not be as bad as the limp, shredded mulch, but I want the big boys, because I only want to mulch any new garden once.
10/09/2006, 11:00 a.m. Update: Hard-target search this morning turned up a pallet of large mulch at 100 Oaks Home Depot. Let the run for the largies begin.