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mulch

[muhlch] /mʌltʃ/
noun
1.
a covering, as of straw, compost, or plastic sheeting, spread on the ground around plants to prevent excessive evaporation or erosion, enrich the soil, inhibit weed growth, etc.
verb (used with object)
2.
to cover with mulch.
Origin
1650-1660
1650-60; noun use of obsolete mulch (adj.), Middle English molsh soft, Old English myl(i)sc mellow; cognate with dialectal German molsch soft, overripe
Related forms
nonmulched, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for mulch
  • Odds and ends go into the wood chipper to make heating fuel, and sawdust is spread around the trees for mulch.
  • The farm relies as much as possible on such predators as well as good mulch.
  • In a minute, the spider took off and hid under some mulch presumably to happily munch on some flies.
  • Water your lawn in the early morning or at night to avoid losses from evaporation and use mulch to trap moisture.
  • The weathered chunks exude a sweet, earthy aroma likened to tobacco, pine or mulch.
  • The residue can be put into a shallow grave and turns to mulch in about a year.
  • mulch, manure and organic weedkillers are also used.
  • They are also recyclable--they usually end up as mulch n your local city parks.
  • And for added drama, the pests that bothered the potato may be lurking in the mulch, waiting to irritate the tomato.
  • It wasn't the kind you use on bulletin boards but something coarse and dark, the color of damp pine mulch.
British Dictionary definitions for mulch

mulch

/mʌltʃ/
noun
1.
half-rotten vegetable matter, peat, etc, used to prevent soil erosion or enrich the soil
verb
2.
(transitive) to cover (the surface of land) with mulch
Word Origin
C17: from obsolete mulch soft; related to Old English mylisc mellow; compare dialect German molsch soft, Latin mollis soft
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for mulch
n.

1650s, probably from a noun use of Middle English molsh (adj.) "soft, moist" (early 15c.), from Old English melsc, milisc "mellow, sweet," from Proto-Germanic *mil-sk- (cf. Dutch mals "soft, ripe," Old High German molawen "to become soft," German mollig "soft"), from PIE root *mel- "soft" (see mild).

v.

1802, from mulch (n.). Related: Mulched; mulching.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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