Wood chips, Bark mulch

Asked February 22, 2018, 5:09 AM EST

Hi, can we use any type of wood for Bark Mulch? Ash, Elm, etc., are they ok to not attract pests that could contaminate. Any recommendations? Does wood mulch attract rodents & insects? Are there any downfalls or things to avoid when using Bark Mulch? Thank You, Lee

Arapahoe County Colorado mulch

1 Response

Recycling wood from trees is a great sustainable practice. Many landscape companies offer chipped products from tree pruning activities. Ash tree products may not be moved out of the quarantine area. For information on the EAB quarantine, please visit: https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/agplants/emerald-ash-borer. See the link titled 'Options for Safe Handling of Ash Tree.'

Mulches provide the following benefits:

  • reduce surface evaporation and retain soil moisture
  • improves water penetration and air movement
  • controls soil temperature fluctuations
  • can improve soil structure
  • helps inhibit weed germination
Proper placement of mulch helps reduce rodent issues. Do not place closer than 6 inches to a woody plant to prevent potential rodent damage.

Here is a fact sheet with additional information on how to choose an appropriate mulch: http://extension.colostate.edu/topic-areas/yard-garden/mulches-for-home-grounds-7-214/