It was all hands on deck to weed and mulch the large beds at Ocean Beach over the weekend. The city provides the mulch, which the Public Works Department creates from the many tons of woody plant debris that’s discarded every year. A giant chipper reduces the branches to a fine-grained mulch that’s easy to spread. Instead of going to a landfill or being burned in a trash-to-energy facility, the waste becomes a valuable garden additive. Two or three inches of wood chip mulch improves any garden bed in many ways:

  • suppresses future weeds
  • helps maintain soil moisture
  • improves the soil over time as microbes break down the chips into turn them into compost
  • looks good!

But spreading a mountain of mulch takes time. Fortunately for the New London Beautification Committee, Connecticut College generously provided us with some eager volunteers. Every spring, prospective students visit the campus for a weekend, and the college is happy to find ways for them to explore New London, meet local residents, see the sights, and give us a few hours of muscle.

Rakes and 5-gallon buckets are the best tools for the job. While some students and volunteers filled buckets and wheelbarrows, others attacked perennial weeds. Weeding is never-ending, but starting early helps us stay ahead of the challenge.

A couple of hours later, and we’re DONE!

Many thanks to the students from Conn College and to our own volunteers for a job well done. Now if only spring temperatures would come back!

Posted by Renee Beaulieu