I needed mulch to keep the weeds down between the shrubs in my yard. A visit to the local poleyard was in order.
The mulch is the chipped up bark of the mostly firs that are peeled to make nice smooth telephone poles.
All the peelings are sorted into mountains. Some are long strands of bark mulch, some are smaller chips of bark, and some are just ratty, junky pieces that aren’t good for much.
My garden needed the smaller chips so we parked the truck and utility trailer at the side of the road between the mulch mountains and waited for the loader to come and help us out.
Here he comes with his scoop in front.
One of those big scoops holds what they call a yard of mulch (we pay by the yard).
I’m always amazed at how little they drop on the way to the trailer.
Here comes our one yard of bark mulch.
When he drops it into the trailer and pats it down with the scoop, the truck shakes like in an earthquake.
It doesn’t seem like a lot until you start unloading it.
While I was waiting for the loader to come, I took a couple of short video clips to show how they take the raw logs and put them into the machine that scores the bark and flips the logs around and around. The power is awe-inspiring. Have you ever tried to juggle a log that size? Look at how the blades cut into the bark without cutting up the wood.
In the second video, you can see the bark mulch shooting out the long pipe to be piled up into those bark mulch mountains. Not much is wasted.
Next time you see bark mulch around a pretty shrub, think about how that log bounced around as it was stripped of its coat. It’s a good thing I can’t talk to the trees or hear what they’re saying, but if I had to guess, I’d bet they’re calling to each other, “Anybody got a coat they can lend me?”
“Naw, they took mine too!”