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Old 05-08-2012, 07:58 AM   #1
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what to do with tree dross

We have just had a huge silver maple removed from the center of our yard. We now have a mound of maple mulch. Any ideas what to do with this area? with the mulch? The tree was not insect-ridden, but can we still expect extra bugs now in the mulch?


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Old 05-08-2012, 01:19 PM   #2
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It sounds like your stump was ground down as much as possible but if not, do that. I would remove the mulch and use it around bushes and things if you want. Know that as it decomposes it will draw nitrogen from the soil and therefore from your plants so you will need to compensate. You would be better off starting a small compost pile and using it is your brown matter.

The remaining stump you cannot grind will continue to decompose over time and a "pit" of sorts will continue to form so you do not want to plant anything too close.

The most common insects likely to be attracted to the mulch and ultimately the stump are termites. They get a bad rep and deserve it when close to or in your foundation. They will do their thing breaking down the remaining stump and hurt nothing. They are one of nature's greatest natural recyclers.

The other problem with raw mulch is it can build up heat, attract rodents, and provide nests for bugs who only want it for that purpose. So plan on putting it somewhere where it can break down and not so thick you see steam coming off of it.

I used to grab the utility guys that just wack tree limbs and chipped them when working in my hood. They were more than pleased to dump truckloads in the back hard but as mentioned the stuff got really, really hot. I once worked for a company the worked closely with the forestry departments to weed out lodgepole pine trees. We cut them, peeled them and used them for fence railings and tree stakes for young trees. We peeled them off their bark and pointed and shaped them up North. The piles of that bark were notorious for starting on fire.


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Old 05-11-2012, 07:26 AM   #3
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Tree dross

Thanks, this is really helpful. We'll begin spreading it and composting it. k&p
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