Add a "Blanket" of Protection!
Mulch to save water, keep down weeds, and protect plants from harsh weather
Mulch is simply any material applied on top of the soil around your plants to keep moisture in and weeds out. It may be organic, such as straw, pine needles, grass clippings, leaves, compost, bark, and even sawdust. Or it may be inorganic: ground-up tires, small rocks, polyethylene sheets, etc.
Simply leave a few inches between your plant's stem and the mulch, so the plant can "breathe" (and to reduce the chance of spreading disease). Never mulch over newly-planted seeds; do mulch heavily as the seasons change and your plants must adjust to new temperatures and light levels. We prefer organic mulches because you can let them sink into the soil, feeding it; however, inorganic mulches are just fine too.