Applying mulch is one of the best things you can do for your landscaping and gardens. By spreading a layer of mulch on top of your soil you can help protect against erosion and keep in the moisture for your plants. Mulching also helps to keep the weeds away and over time breaks down into the soil increasing soil quality. A depth of 1.5 inches should be enough if you plan to mulch every year. After 2 years most of the mulch will have disintegrated back into the soil.
The most popular type of mulch today is dyed black mulch. Just be sure when applying any dyed mulch to plan on having at least a day or two to let the mulch dry after being applied. This allows the dye to bond better and prevent some of the color from washing away. When applying mulch, a pitchfork works well with most varieties and can be spread with a side to side motion.