• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • Anne Miller
  • r ranson
  • paul wheaton
  • Pearl Sutton
  • James Freyr
  • Burra Maluca
  • Mike Haasl
  • Joylynn Hardesty
master gardeners:
  • Steve Thorn
  • Greg Martin
  • thomas rubino
  • Jay Angler
  • Tereza Okava

Mulch driveway?

Posts: 9
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've got 40 acres grown up in hedge and cedar among many other native KS trees I plan to trim some trees up to 7'and completely remove some. I also need to put a driveway in basically all the way across the property which is a big chunk of money for me. Seems a waste to burn all this wood that I could mulch. So my idea is to use it for a driveway. Anyone ever done this? There are obvious pros and cons but I think I could stand a little more maintenance than I would have with gravel and I think it would look better. Tho one thing I do like is the cedar and Osage orange won't rot easily on the other hand with a lot of water it will float away.
Posts: 11770
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
cat forest garden fish trees chicken fiber arts wood heat greening the desert
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
If you have 40 acres there's no need to burn any of the material. You can just make low piles of it or even windrows on contour to stop erosion. There's rarely a need to burn branches. I don't know why people insist on doing it, there's nothing good about it.

If you can afford to make chips from the material, it can make a nice driveway, but a driveway takes literally tons of it. You might want to use road base/gravel for the parts of the drive you plan to use most, and put chips on the other parts.

Posts: 1719
Location: Los Angeles, CA
hugelkultur forest garden books urban chicken food preservation
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Try it and see. The big stuff can be piled on the side of the road, while the leafy/branchy stuff would go on the road itself. As it dries out and as you drive over it, it will breakdown.

One thing you'll find is that as you pile up the mulch, the soil will become more permeable beneath, which will greatly increase water infiltration. So while you worry about heavy rains carrying that material away, what you may find is that instead, you'll get much better infiltration and less run-off.

I create brush piles below my fruit trees on the hillside. I throw the large branches down first and create a kind of organic terrace. Particularly on south-facing hillsides, it keeps the sun from baking the soil on the downhill side of the tree. The soil temperature stays much much cooler, the soil retains moisture better, it creates a fantastic habitat for lizards, snakes, fungi, microbes and other living things, and eventually, that organic material breaks-down and feeds the soil. Take your time and lay the branches down, building a kind of "beaver dam" of branches on contour below the trees.

I agree with Tyler: never burn anything organic. Even slow to rot stuff like osage orange, use it somewhere. I can never get enough biomass and I've only got a fraction of the land you have.
Wink, wink, nudge, nudge, say no more, it's a tiny ad:
Learn Permaculture through a little hard work
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic