How To Keep Mulch From Losing Its Color?

Mulch is placed on the soil the protect it, benefit it, and keep its moisture intact, and it does its job very well if you keep the maintenance properly. What does it mean?

How to keep mulch from losing its color? You would have to take some essential steps to tackle this problem as the loss of mulch’s color could mean that it is losing its credibility. Steps like renewing the color. Yes, the simplest way to deal with this problem would be to use new and fresh mulch on the old and color-losing one to renew it.

However, there are some other ways to keep mulch from losing its color. Kindly read to the end to get your answer to the fullest.

Why Does Mulch Lose its Color?

Everything has a time limit in this world, as does the mulch, only if not cared for properly. Among many reasons for this problem, one is that when the mulch is exposed to a lot of sunlight, it will have negative effects on the mulch. That is why you should check on the mulch from time to time.

But isn’t mulch placed to protect the soil from the sunlight in the first place? Yes, it is there for that job. But you must understand that the mulch can only function properly if it is being maintained over time. If not, then it will keep on working for about 4 to 5 months or 1 year, depending on the mulch you choose.

The second reason may be that some weeds can still penetrate through the mulch and reproduce on it. That will also negatively affect the functionality of mulch, and of course, its color will start to get dim. That is the reason why experts suggest changing or adding mulch over the old one to keep things running smoothly and keep the mulch’s color intact.

Which Mulch Fades the Fastest?

It is easier to guess as the organic or natural mulch tends to fade faster than the synthetic or artificial ones. The reason is that when you use organic mulch like leaves or wood chips, you know very well that they lose their color faster. The leaves become yellow, and the wood chips’ color start fading.

However, that does not mean that you should not use organic mulch at all; in fact, it is better for your soil than the artificial one. But you would have to keep a check on its maintenance and well-being.

Tips for Maintaining Mulch Color:

The mulch’s color is fading, and you must act fast to avoid the problem as this could mean the mulch is getting weak. Let’s find out how you could deal with it.

1. Turn and Mix the Mulch:

This is what you should do on a yearly basis, as it is among the more straightforward ways. You would have to turn the mulch upside down or whichever is necessary to make it look relatively new and fresh. The bottom of the mulch, which was protected from the sunlight, will then be exposed to the sunlight and will add the mulch’s credibility for some more time.

2. Reduce Mulch Exposure to Mulching:

That’s correct. You should reduce the mulch’s exposure to mulching, which means that try to expose the mulch to the daylight whenever vital, but not more than that. In simpler terms, keep the mulch, in a manner, protected and unexposed to the light to preserve its color. That way, the color will likely keep its freshness for additional time.

3. Avoid Flooding and Excess Water:

Watering the mulch is good, and it is essential, but that doesn’t mean that you can water it as much as you want, simply because you want your mulch to be the best. A study also confirms this theory that one should always provide water as the mulch’s requirement. So, you can use this technique to lower the risk of mulch’s color losing.

4. Apply a Layer of New Mulch Over Old Mulch:

This is the most recommended and effective method to preserve the mulch’s color and make it look fresh and new all the way. You simply have to use some new mulch or a layer of it to put down the older and fading mulch. As you can guess, the mulch will start to look new and fresh.

There is one thing to consider here, which is not to make the mulch overly thick by adding the new one; as you would probably know, the ideal and suggested thickness or density of mulch is around 3 inches, give or take. If you make it thicker than that, there will be no easy access to oxygen, moisture, and needed sunlight. Or, if you make it thinner than that, the cannabis (weed) plants will penetrate through the mulch and keep on surviving.

5. Use Rubber Mulch:

If you want to kill the nib in its bud, you would prefer to use rubber mulch. The rubber mulch is an artificial mulch made from rubber, and the rubber mulch’s color does NOT fade with time. On the other hand, rubber mulch is also suitable for your soil as it can do all the tasks of a natural mulch.

However, it does have its ups and downs, but that is not the point. If you are solely focusing on keeping the mulch color from fading away, rubber mulch is your answer.

Can You Spray Paint Old Mulch to Look New?

Yes, you can. It is a good way to make the mulch look fresher and new. You can find many mulch paints in the market that are specially designed to spray the older mulches. Both the color and the water are mixed together to create this paint, and then it is sprayed over the color-fading mulch.

You can spray all you want but you can’t deny that you are just improving its look, not its health. In other words, you are spraying to hide the problem, but not dealing with it. That will impact your mulch and it will get weak over time.

Is Dyed Mulch Better than Normal Mulch?

The dyed mulch looks good when applied but it is not a good choice for your soil. The dyed mulch will function just like the normal mulches during its lifetime. It will keep the soil moist, stop the weeds from growing, conserve the moisture. But it will NOT decay to get mixed with the soil and benefit it.

The color painted on this mulch is not natural, which means eventually, it will fade and will leave the mulch after it is not able to function anymore. So, while sliding off the mulch, the color, which has several dangerous compounds will come in contact with the soil and you know that it is definitely not a good thing to happen.


No matter what you do, the mulch’s color will fade away eventually, because it is bound to do so. The spraying, turning, or mixing of the mulch are effective but temporary solutions. You should go for the permanent one. Using natural mulch is the best course of action here.

You would have to change or replace the mulch once every 3 or 4 years, not very difficult, right? By doing so, you will avoid the added complications of other methods and your soil will be all good. Thank you.

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