Description of practice

Mulching with pruning materials (such as chipped branches) is an effective soil management practice to reduce surface runoff, conserve soil moisture and control water erosion. Prunings have several advantages over other mulching materials such as low cost and ready availability, especially in orchards.

Examples of how to use mulching with pruning materials Further information
(see Note below)

AMP71 01

Bark mulch

Bark mulch is applied to the bare soil surrounding trees in orchards. It is a relatively cheap method of suppressing and controlling weed growth, while at the same time retaining soil moisture and enhancing fertility.


»Xtremehorticulture of the desert

AMP71 02

Chipped branches

Chipped branches from trees are used to cover bare soil, reducing surface water runoff after heavy rainfall and increasing soil organic matter content through decomposition.


»WOCAT technology 1269

AMP71 03

Leaf prunings

Leaf prunings (e.g. from bananas) are applied to the soil surface, enhancing organic matter content, reducing evaporation and protecting against erosion.



AMP71 04

Wood chips

Wood chips are used as a soil mulch. Because they are a highly resistant organic material, wood chips are ideal for increasing stable organic matter in the soil. Once incorporated, wood chips are slowly broken down by the soil fauna and (partly) converted into humus.


»Bodemkundige Dienst van België

Note: Most of the Further information links are to a full description of the example in the WOCAT database. However sometimes the link may be to similar practices or a research paper. Occasionally the link is to a commercial product in which case it should be understood that this does not imply any endorsement of the product by iSQAPER.

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