Thursday, July 02, 2009


A new kind of mulch for your garden

What my brother found at the Spokane Costco store is a mulch for garden and playground use that is made of recycled tires. It is a rubber product that is a little darker than the cedar bark sold around here for garden use but offers a lot of advantages. The cedar product is beautiful when new but it quickly fades to a gray color, after just a couple of months and fairly soon turns into dirt. You have to renew it every year. It has small slivers that will get stuck in your hands unless you wear gloves always around it and are pretty lucky.

The rubber based product is a little darker brown but that color is guaranteed to stay that way for 12 years. The product doesn't break down into dirt, in fact it is a pretty good barrier to grass, weeds, etc. growing through it. There are no slivers to get stuck in your hands and it is even easy to walk on. Are there any negatives? Well, maybe in the short term as the cost is higher. Our gardeners told us our area would need about a cubic yard of bark which would cost about $50 and probably another $50 or so for them to deliver & spread it. A cubic yard is 27 cubic feet. The rubber mulch comes in 1.6 cubic foot bags for $19.49 so it would take 17 bags of it for 27 cu ft at a cost of about $331. But it doesn't have to be done every year and really doesn't have to be quite as thickly applied.

We have bought 13 bags and still have one unopened and another with a bit left. I think these will work for us for this year and next year we may want to buy two or three more to top off any thin areas. After that I don't think we will need much over quite a few years.

Fence 08
Here is another photo of the garden area showing the mulch. Notice the cat planter? I found that at a Hallmark Store for Pat as part of her gift for our second wedding anniversary. So I guess you could say that we now have four cats.

Fence 09
This shows the mulch a bit better, being a closer view. We have had it now a few weeks and really like it. I've been told that it is available from Walmart but they carry smaller bags, so if you need very much then probably Costco is a better place to look. This photo also shows the stump for the other large bush that I called a bumblebee bush that we took out after the cold winter killed them.

Fence 13
Another view of the arbor we placed just inside the gate in the fence.

Fence 10
A better view of the white post top light that is just inside the gate. In the background you can see part of our park's clubhouse. This side of it has the indoor swimming pool inside. There is also a good library with many books.

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That sounds like very interesting stuff.I really like the little kitty planter.
I don't remember how I stumbled onto your blog but I really enjoy it. Your photos are fantastic and I enjoy reading about your travels. Thank you for all of the effort you put in!
I came to your blog by way of Mary Lou. My husband and I were both widow and widower and married in 2001. We have an RV and love traveling. I hope the two of you have many wonderful times on the road.
I like the arbor and the blue skies even more lol! That mulch sounds a good idea. Bob
Gorgeous photos...

Hope you had a great 4th!

Have a good week
Love, Jess
Gday Dick, happy Anniversary to your self and Pat,, with many more years of happiness to follow.

Dick the Rubber topping looks very interesting havent seen it here yet I think the rubber would be to hot for the plants here think would cook the roots of the plants we get very high temps in summer up to 45celius... phew hot!! I use river pbbles right though my garden for same reason as you are using Rubber..
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