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Harvesting pine bark mulch

 
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Location: Zone 9b
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Something I stumbled on I thought was kind of cool and worthy of sharing. Im in the process of converting 2.5 acres into a food forest. There were a few tall pines that just had to come down... Too close to the house. The contractor I used cut them down and cut them all into nice managable 3 foot lengths. I rolled each of the logs to make a nice 2 foot tall natural wall next to the wood putting the entire tree right where I wanted it with the intent of one day burying the logs for mounds... Heugelkultur style. Fast forward 2 months and I notice the bark or these logs is now very loose. I grab a hatchet... Hit each log  lengthwise across the top and the bark splits into 2 beautiful perfect slabs... one on each side of the log. Low and behold on each slab is all of these juicy 1 inch long grubs that my chickens absolutely loved. Over the course of about 2 weeks I must have harvested and fed my chickens 100s of these grubs and placed each "slab" of bark to make beautiful pathways around the property. Each slab was a perfect semi circle and when stepped on made perfect pine bark mulch paths. This was never planned but wow was it satisfying and I was very happy with the outcome. It was much more satisfying then when I think about the labor involved with burying all of those logs! :-)
 
gardener
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Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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Great way to get a very cool path.  

If I might offer up a suggestion with the logs, since you already have them stacked, why not just make a mushroom slurry and pour that over them to get the rotting process going.
Once the wood is being worked on by the fungi all you would have to do is use those as a place to pile organic refuse on, that way you aren't shoveling to bury the logs, all of the materials will rot, and soon you will have a hugel mound.
 
Steven Hendrickson
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Location: Zone 9b
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I don't know the first thing about growing mushrooms but you just sent me on a Google rampage. Any particular type you would recommend? I'm in zone 9b so I don't know what would variety of shrooms would be easiest for a newbie.
 
pollinator
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Another thing I have done is take the log "rounds" and cut them into 4 inch "cookies" if you will. You can use these like stepping stones or stone pavers and then place the bark mulch in between the cookies for a nice natural and easy to walk on patio or path.

 
Bryant RedHawk
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Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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Steven Hendrickson wrote:I don't know the first thing about growing mushrooms but you just sent me on a Google rampage. Any particular type you would recommend? I'm in zone 9b so I don't know what would variety of shrooms would be easiest for a newbie.



Oyster mushrooms are generally considered the easiest for first time growers.
 
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