We live in a homeowner’s association with a covenant about the percentage of mulch (organic/wood) we can use compared to rock. It only allows 25% of our landscaping to be wood. They claim that wood mulch is home to rodents of all kinds. We prefer wood bark. Is there a publication I can use to argue our case?

All mulching materials have advantages and disadvantages. Research did not yield any documents that make a watertight case for or against any of them, including crushed rock, lava, etc. Here are some frequently mentioned concerns:

1. Rock mulch such as …

Some animal (squirrels?) is eating plastic in our yard: plastic tray on the gas grill, plastic edging in the garden, plastic handles of tools, vinyl siding on the house. If this is a squirrel as we suspect, what can we do to stop it?

You need to find out what animal is doing this. Different animals are managed in different ways, so proper identification is key. If it is squirrel damage, you should be able to see the incisor imprints at the location of …