• Bark Dust Beautiful Outdoor Applications

    Bark blowering

    Gardening.

    Landscaping.

    Edges for sidewalks.

    That children’s playground.

    What do all these have in common? The answer may surprise you.

    When entering a playground, the first noticeable sensation is underneath the feet. It’s that hard, slightly giving, brown mulch that appears like it can handle a quick fall. It cushions, which is perfect for a playground where kids run around.

    Then there’s the edges of sidewalks. That slightly giving brown mulch is there as well. It lines the path of the sidewalk. It might not be brown. Red is a possible color as well.

    Landscaping. The mulch is featured across the lawn. It replaces dirt in many cases, circling around shrubs and bushes, lined across walkways.

    Then there is gardening. Sometimes it is placed over a garden, sometimes lining it. It looks natural–it is expected. But what is it?

    That mulch looks like a particular feature within nature. It is tree bark, cut up into small chunks and added to landscape for its ability to handle water, control pH, provide cushion, and to promote aesthetics. Bark dust.

    Bark dust, or also called bark chips, bark mulch, or beauty bark, has two primary sources: the Douglas fir and the Western Hemlock. It is sourced on its own, or may be the product of lumber services or yard debris recycling. Bark dust is typically categorized by its source plant, with the coarseness of the bark dust dependent on the tree it comes from.

    It has application for all the above mentioned: the garden, the landscape, the sidewalk, the playground.

    Gardening requires the management of soil properties. Too much rain and the plants will drown, while too little rain and the plants will dry out. While traditional topsoil and dirt is often used for a garden, bark dust is also used.

    Bark dust affects the pH of the soil, as well as regulating the temperature of soil below it, and preventing water loss and erosion. Bark dust consumes nitrogen when it decomposes, limiting the effects of it on plants.

    Bark dust also is effective at absorbing water. It prevents evaporation, keeping your plants at a safe water level.

    Landscaping requires the use of herbicides to grow grass. It also requires a method of containing weeds. Bark dust contains natural herbicides, which can help grow grass. It also has natural weed killing properties, making it popular among landscapers who want to both grow grass and kill weeds.

    It is used around shrubs and trees. This is most often in the Pacific northwest, where the bark dust originates from. For landscaping, a two to three inch layer of bark dust is recommended.

    It does not compress as much as dirt, so it is used in playgrounds to prevent injuries. For playgrounds, a 12-inch layer of bark dust is recommended.

    It is often sold by the unit. It is delivered directly to the job site, then spread with bark blowers. Bark dust blowing involves shooting the bark dust through a tube onto the area. It is also sold at smaller units in garden retailers.

    It, while available in stores, relies directly on harvesters of it, predominantly in the northwest United States. A search for ‘Bark Dust Portland Oregon’ or ‘Bark Dust Beaverton’ or ‘Bark Dust Vancouver WA’ reveals certain companies that provide services for the bark dust industry and its consumers.