Black mulch or gravel for a midcentury home landscaping?

I have a 1956 midcentury home in La Mirada, CA, and I’m now working on the landscaping. I would like some opinions on whether I should go with black mulch or gravel?

👉🏻  I would use gravel. Especially with the cactus vide you have going on.

👉🏻 Black mulch. Gravel is harder to upkeep and keep nice. We have Spanish Dagger plants and it looks fine with mulch, so much easier to keep looking sharp.

👉🏻 Weed barrier then decomposed granite. It comes in different shades and as it settles it hardens so you can rake, blow, walk onto easily. Needs 3-4 inches to compact down. It‘s available at landscaping suppliers. Most can deliver it right to you for a small fee. They can estimate how much you need too. A little more than bark but you don’t have to replace it. It does not attract termites and it stays put.

👉🏻 Black mulch fades SUPER quick. I used it at my last house, looks fresh for maybe two weeks. Very dull & grey & flat soon after. If you choose the right pebbles, you’ll get the perfect look the first time!

👉🏻 We live in Montreal, Canada. We’ve only ever used black mulch, and it’s very easy to maintain. Just needs to be turned or raked every Spring to freshen it up. We would add new mulch to the existing every few years. The bonus is it helps to keep the moisture in so your plants will love it. Also easy to pick any weeds that come up through it.

👉🏻 Gravel or stones if you don’t have deciduous trees. Mulch if there is not much direct sunlight to that area, the mulch will fade quickly and have to be replaced every 2 to 3 years. I’m in SoCal too and have beds with both gravel and mulch, I prefer the gravel/small stones.

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