Bark chippings – The perfect natural mulch for your garden!

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When you think of mulch, you probably think of something that will keep your soil cool in the summer and warm in the winter. You’re right! Mulch is a protective covering for your lawn or garden beds; it helps retain moisture, prevents weed growth, and also adds an aesthetically pleasing look to your landscape. There are several types of mulches available in the market; however, not all of them are safe for your garden or environment. We often come across bark chippings as a mulch option, but is it suitable for our garden? Let’s find out!


What is bark chipping?

Bark chipping is the process of chipping or shredding wood bark into small pieces. Usually, trees like cedar, pine, spruce or hemlock are used for bark chipping. In addition to being a good mulching agent, it can also be used as a soil conditioner. It can be shredded into coarse, medium or fine pieces depending upon the use. Wood bark contains tannin, which helps in controlling diseases and pests. The biggest advantage of using bark chipping is that it doesn’t rot easily and lasts longer. It is also a cheaper alternative compared to other mulching materials such as straw, coco coir or peat moss.


Why use bark chippings for mulching?

– They are a great source of nutrients for your plants and are safe for the environment. – They can retain moisture in the soil for a longer duration. – They don’t break down easily and hence, don’t create a mess in the garden like other mulching materials would. – Since bark chippings are cheap, you can use them without worrying about the high costs. – They can be easily sourced from local nurseries or supply stores in your neighbourhood.


Is it safe for the environment?

Bark chippings are a safe mulching material for your garden because they are made of bark. They have a low carbon content and hence, don’t contribute to carbon emissions as is the case with other mulching materials. Bark chippings are a natural mulch which is usually produced from the waste of lumber companies. It is biodegradable and hence, will not harm your plants or soil. In fact, it is rich in nutrients and can be used as a soil conditioner. It is also safe for your garden soil because it doesn’t contain heavy metals which are found in synthetic mulches like fertilizers, fly ash, etc. bark chippings


Varieties of Bark Chippings

There are three types of bark chippings available in the market – pine bark, spruce bark and hemlock bark. They all have their own uses and aren’t interchangeable. Pine bark is usually light brown in colour and has a fine texture. It is ideal for use in gardens where there is constant moisture. It doesn’t break down easily and tends to be very dense. Spruce bark has a reddish brown colour and has a coarser texture. It is dark in colour and has a strong smell. It is used in areas where there is less moisture like a flower bed. It breaks down easily and is a good mulch to use for young plants. Hemlock bark is dark brown in colour and has a fine texture. It is a good mulching option for areas that don’t receive much moisture.


Pros of using Bark chipping for mulching

– They are eco-friendly and biodegradable which makes them an ideal choice for gardens. – They can help conserve soil nutrients as well as moisture in the soil. – They don’t contain any harmful chemicals which can be harmful for your plants. – They are cost efficient since you can use them again and again. – They are easy to source and available at a cheaper price.


Cons of using Bark chipping for mulching

– They have a short lifespan and need to be replaced after every few weeks. – They are not ideal for areas that have a high level of moisture like a vegetable garden. – They can promote the growth of weeds because they are a porous material. – They are not as aesthetically pleasing as other mulching materials like peat moss or straw.



Bark chippings are a good mulching material for your garden because they are a natural product that is biodegradable, rich in nutrients and an effective weed control agent. They are a low-cost mulching material that is easy to source and lasts longer than other synthetic mulching materials. They are also an excellent source of carbon for your garden and help you conserve soil nutrients. They are safe for the environment and are a safe choice for your garden.

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September 24, 2022 |

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