After you plant a tree and sufficiently water it, mulching it is typically the next step. Mulching can help your tree by not allowing weeds to take up soil space, keep the temperature of the soil around the tree regulated, and help the soil stay moist in between rainfalls and watering. A common myth, however, is that the more mulch, the better.
In reality, too much mulch can hurt the tree in the long run. Mulch should be about two to four inches deep above the soil around the tree. Be sure not to place mulch up to the base of the tree. This can lead to a buildup of moisture that can house diseases and insects, leading to long-lasting damage to the tree. Mulch close too to the base of the trunk or too much mulch can also cause improper hydration for the tree.