What Mulch Deters Termites?

Rena Sherwood

Termites can be attracted to any type of mulch, whether or not it is made of wood. Despite claims made by mulch companies, there are no mulches that deter termites 100 percent of the time.

Termites are attracted to wood-based mulches.


Mulches are able to hold in moisture and make soil suitable for termites to tunnel into. Even gravel mulch, if moist enough, will invite termites if the mulch touches a wooden structure. The mulch will act as a bridge.


When using any kind of mulch, make sure it is at least 6 inches away from a house or wooden structure. Make the mulch layer less than 2 inches thick, which is thin enough to let in sunlight and dry out termite bodies.


Termites seem to prefer some mulch over others. Mulches they did not prefer, but may still tunnel into, include mulch made from cypress heartwood and melaleuca wood