Here are times when it is better to bare your soil:
Early in the spring season, mulch can prevent the sun from warming the soil, making it more difficult to start your garden.
Mulch retains water, which can saturate your garden if you already live in a swampy area.
Mulch can create a habitat for crop-destroying pests like slugs and mites. Small rodents can also burrow in thicker areas.
Some inexpensive mulch has dyes or added chemicals to make them look aesthetically pleasing. These chemicals can break down in your soil and inhibit plant growth or change soil composition.
If piled too high, mulch can cause stems or trunks to rot by holding too much moisture against them.
Remember to review your plants' needs before deciding if bare soil is right for you.