Asked September 25, 2015, 9:43 AM EDT

If I plan to change the usage of an area in my yard that now has old mulch do I need to totally remove all the mulch before putting down the new top soil and garden soil mixture to plant in?

I am getting conflicting information from different outdoor stores and want to confirm.

One place says just put down the new top soil and then the special miracle grow soil and plat the perennials and then I can put new mulch around the surface around each plant.

Anoka County Minnesota

1 Response

It could depend upon what the old mulch is, and how deep it is. If it has decomposed a lot you could simply top it off with the new mixture.

If it's not too much trouble you could rake up most of the mulch, put in your new planting mix and plants, and then reuse the old mulch (along with some new mulch if you need more). Depending on what the old mulch is, you could also till it into the existing soil and then top it off with the new mixture.

Wood chips, as they decompose, take up a lot of nitrogen so if that is what the old mulch consists of you may not want to till them in.