A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

Mounds of chips won’t be wasted

Written October 1st, 2019 by Hasso Hering

Looking across a section of North Albany County Park on the afternoon of Sept. 30.

On a ride up and down the hills of North Albany on Monday, I detoured into North Albany County Park to see how the cleanup was going after the recent logging there.

Pretty impressive mounds of wood chips, I thought. It’s what’s left from the chipping of branches and grinding of most of the stumps of trees cut down a couple of weeks ago.

What’s going to happen to all that material? I put the question to Adam Stebbins, natural resources coordinator for Benton County Parks and Natural Areas.

“The chips and grindings will be used to ensure that the planted pines and the existing trees have good mulch around the base of each tree,” he replied.

You’ll recall that having taken out 55 Douglas firs as real or potential “hazard trees” over a few days in September, the county plans to replace them with Willamette Valley pines, a variety of evergreen said to be better adapted to conditions in the park.

Those big Douglas firs are gone, of course, but what’s left of them will be put to good use. (hh)

8 responses to “Mounds of chips won’t be wasted”

  1. thomas cordier says:

    my understanding is that wood chips are not suited for that application. They are not the same as bark dust/chips. The wood chips take Nitrogen from the soil–robbing the tree of nutrients while they decay.
    that info given to me long ago. worth another question to Stebbins.

    • hj.anony1 says:

      Your understanding cordier? I question every bit of your understanding. That said, bring me a crow on this bit and I’ll eat it. Beak first please. I doubt you are correct. Point!

      • thomas cordier says:

        I couldn’t care less about your opinion of my ideas. At least I’m willing to not hide my identity like all you anonys

    • Jennifer Stuart says:

      The Texas A&M Agrilife Extension website says fresh wood chips are a good mulch for trees and shrubs. The nitrogen depletion would be more of a problem if the chips were dug into the soil like compost, but as a surface mulch they are fine. You can read about it here:

  2. J.Jacobson says:

    Rumor has it that fresh Doug Fir wood chips are ideal for surrounding one’s blueberry bushes. Something in the wood fiber’s acidity that proves beneficial for blueberry production. Perhaps the County should get into the blueberry business as a hedge against future shortfalls.

  3. Rich Kellum says:

    They may be able to be used in the new composting process at the treatment plant

  4. thomas cordier says:

    HH seems like you owe another look at this headline, etc


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