I have a huge pile of woodchips in the driveway and a dozen mulching projects to tackle. The project yesterday was to mulch the fruit trees.
I wanted to pull up the landscape fabric we used under the mulch when we planted the trees 'cause it made the clay soil look like this.
In the process, we found this spotted salamander under the fabric. He's a bit slow moving 'cause the weather is cool. Bill tells me his bright colors show that he's young. Both the black and the yellow will fade next year.
At the end of the day (by the way, this is the only context in which that phrase should be used) the fruit garden looked like this. The generous layer of woodchips will begin adding its micronutrients to the soil and decomposing to improve soil texture.