Its main selling points are its safety and its durability. However, given that rubber mulch lasts longer and does not require yearly re-spreading or repurchasing, its relatively high cost per bag is eventually offset by its longevity. Additionally, wood mulch can breed "artillery" fungus that can stain nearby cars and homes with fungal spores that, once dried, remain forever. Rubber does not attract termites, because it is not comprised of the organic materials these pests gravitate to. Rubber Mulch vs. Wood Mulch Both wood-based and rubber mulches act as ground cover and offer the benefits of insulating and retaining soil. If you live in an area with high winds, or during heavy rains, wood will blow away more easily than rubber. He's an experienced home improvement researcher and project creator with a wide range of interests, and especially enjoys learning about organic gardening. Ever since rubber mulch hit the market several years ago, it has become an increasingly popular choice for loose fill in both playgrounds and landscaping. Rubber mulches are available in many colors and are designed to retain their color without fading longer than artificially colored wood mulch products. That this mulch is both cheap and scientifically proven to be Wood mulch, on the other hand, can allow for the infestation of both termites and fungal growth. We welcome your comments and If you are worried about a mold infestation, rubber mulch comes out on top again. Or, should you perhaps replace mulch with stones? Pros and cons of wood and rubber mulch. Other materials can be used as mulch, including: Pine needles increase soil acidity, making them ideal for use around acid-loving plants. These woods may contain arsenic and creosote among other byproducts. Mulch. This mulch will not fade, rot, compress or lose its … He has worked as a handyman for various individuals since 2013, with a focus on lawn care and home renovation.  DoItYourself.com®, founded in 1995, is the leading independent Rubber mulch has superior shock absorption and outperforms wood mulch (and even gravel and sand), and is thus considered the safest playground surfacing material. However, it lasts longer and does not require yearly re-spreading or repurchasing. Rocks vs. Mulch–Which Is Better in Flower Beds and Around Trees? https://www.doityourself.com/stry/rubber-mulch-vs-wood-mulch Lasting Beauty shredded rubber mulch stands alone as the industry's hallmark recycled rubber mulch. Wood mulch products use dyed woods, old pallets that have been ground up, and other woods which were used in industrial capacities. Mulch and Termites: Can Mulch Endanger Y... Mulch and Termites: Can Mulch Endanger Your Home? Wood mulch fades, requires repurchasing every one to two years, and can cause termite troubles, which can increase labor and out-of-pocket costs. Rubber mulch stays put, even in the harshest weather conditions. suggestions. Compare Wood Mulch vs Rock Mulch Costs Wood Mulch Overview. Under the right circumstances, wood mulch can actually steal nutritious nitrogen from the plants it’s meant to protect. Rubber mulch provides excellent drainage for the soil and supplies great insulation against harsh weather. Rubber mulch generally comes from recycled tires which would otherwise end up in landfills, as they decompose at a very slow rate. Here are some rubber mulch for playgrounds pros and cons. Read on to learn the pros and cons of mulching with an organic mulch or an inorganic mulch like rocks. This Type of Mulch Never Needs Replacing...and introduction to recycled rubber mulch. Rubber mulch seems like the more expensive option between the two. It lasts longer, requires … Rubber mulch comes up on every internet search for permanence…Let me tell you a little about rubber mulches. A bargain for gardeners Arborist wood chips are available locally in many communities. Mulch calculator online - estimate how much mulch you need for your gardening / landscaping project. It allows the soil to maintain higher levels of both heat and moisture. In this video guys, I show you how I removed old rubberized mulch from a flower bed and re-used it as a base for the new finer shredded rubber mulch. Instead of purchasing expensive mulch from nurseries or stores, you can use items from your home and garden such as pebbles, compost, wood chips, bark, grass clipping, or decaying leaves. Of the three types of wood mulch, large bark nuggets will last the longest. It allows a higher degree of heat to be maintained in the soil, and it better maintains moisture levels. It's easy to use and maintain and perfect for playgrounds and play areas. COPYRIGHT © 2020 Rubber Mulch Rubber Mulch Benefits Often recycled from old tires, rubber mulch provides a long lasting soil cover. The rubber mulch in Bandon is made of the same recycled tire rubber that is used as infill in crumb rubber artificial turf. If you’re looking for an easy, long-term mulch solution for your garden, choose rubber mulch. Gabriel Connor Salter is a freelance writer and editor who has had over 280 articles published by various organizations.   During inclement weather, traditional wood mulch often gets whipped out of place by strong winds, or floats away due to excessive rain. Most sources are free or inexpensive for wood chips made from recycled pallets and other discarded wood products. Nitrogen is a highly beneficial component. Wood mulch products use dyed woods, old pallets that have been ground up, and other woods which were used in industrial capacities. Rubber mulch does eventually break down over time, much like any other mulch product. rubber mulch being made from ground up old tires contains many chemicals that are harmful to plants animals and people. Like other types of mulch, it is used to prevent weed growth and improve the look of your garden or landscaping. natural wood mulch as it breaks down adds nutrients to the solid rubber adds nothing. Unlike rubber mulch, wood chips are free of chemicals and harmful substances. Mulches can be of significant help in maintaining the soil, as they tend to keep the temperature relatively steady and reduce evaporation, helping protect plants from drought and … Many people are often confused about the use of rubber mulch vs wood mulch in their gardens, but it all depends on the purpose you are using it for. Wood fades; requires repurchasing every 1 to 2 years; and can cause termite troubles, which can increase labor and out-of-pocket costs. Furthermore, natural mulch continues to fertilize your garden soil, even while it’s breaking down. Like wood mulch, rubber mulch does an excellent job of reducing weed growth. The choice between using rubber mulch or wood mulch in your garden is not a light decision. 1995-2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. While wood chip mulch can provide long term benefits to soil as it breaks down over time, it’s also high in carbon. You can expect rubber mulch to have a slightly higher up-front cost than wood mulch, because of the better quality of its materials. It found its niche as a bouncy, soft surface for children's playgrounds. Natural Mulch: Wood mulch (like BC cedar mulch) is organic and naturally occurring. 6. When it comes to insect infestation, rubber mulch wins the match. But most people prefer to use organic material like shredded wood, bark, or wood chips that are affordable, eco-friendly, and visually appealing. Pests are attracted to the moist, rotting wood in wood mulch. Wood is one of several varieties of organic mulch - meaning mulch that breaks down over time, adding nutrients to the soil. Rubber mulch does not decompose like wood chips. Bark mulch and other wood-based items are made up of organic materials which break down over time and add nutrients to the soil. The groundskeeper is surely going to stay busy raking that mulch back to the areas where it provides protection! Both rubber and wood mulch come in many different colors and cater to all aesthetic requirements. to this site, and use it for non-commercial use subject to our terms of use. If you go out to purchase either option, wood mulch is much cheaper on the store shelves when compared with rubber mulches. Copyright© Contrary to popular belief, both wood chip mulch and rubber tire mulch can leak toxins into your soil. Rubber tire mulch reduces mold and weed growth by dehydrating most weed seeds and spores before they can reach through to the soil. There has been some controversy over the years concerning the potential dangers of the rubber. Unfortunately, because of the reclaimed and used nature of most mulch material, the only way to be sure that your wood mulch is immune to such issues is to use mulch made from tree bark that hasn’t been treated or used for another purpose. You may freely link Different mulches benefit your soil in different ways and present unique challenges, including possible toxicity, infestation, and the overall cost in terms of both labor and out-of-pocket expense. When you consider that this material comes from used tires, it means that any chemicals those tires ever came into contact with could potentially be transferred to your garden. Option 5: Rubber Mulch Rubber mulch is growing in popularity as playground turf and can seem like an ideal alternative to wood mulch. Rubber if caught on fire is far harder to douse then wood mulch chips. Obviously, a mulch made from rocks or rubber will last the longest. Rubber mulch is available in a variety of colors, and can be used in playgrounds and around the house. With a consistent layer, the only weeds seen over the course of a 32-week season tend to be around the edges of the area that was mulched. He has also worked as a seasonal employee for the landscaping companies Fisk Lawnscapes and Davey Tree Expert Company and as a Remodeling Assistant for the home renovation company Improvement Pros, LLC. The rubber mulches burned faster and hotter, creating a more severe fire that was harder to put out than the one in the wood mulch. It also feeds topsoil important and beneficial nutrients. Craig is a contributing writer for DoItYourself.com. Whilst wood mulch decomposes after only a few months, rubber mulch lasts for a minimum of 10-20 years, thus earning it the title of “permanent mulch”. http://www.ehow.com/about_5396770_rubber-vs-wood-mulch.html, http://www.lowes.com/projects/lawn-and-garden/mulch-bg/project, http://homeguides.sfgate.com/comparison-between-rubber-mulch-wood-chips-51700.html, http://www.doityourself.com/stry/rubber-mulch-vs-wood-mulch#b, http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/news/2009/03/mulch-tests-rubber-stacks-up-well-against-wood/index.htm, http://www.homeadvisor.com/article.show.Wood-v-Rubber-Mulch.14229.html, Inexpensive Ways to Enhance Your Curb Appeal. While the wood vs. rubber debate endures because these two mulch varieties are very common, there are other options available such as gravel or rock mulch, grass clippings, straw mulch, and many others. Rubber is heavier than wood mulch and thus has more staying power than the lightweight wood chips. All information is provided "AS IS." Rubber mulch comes in a variety of colors and some can look similar to wood mulch. Doesn’t last as long – Wood mulches will not last as long as rubber mulch and will have to replenish Splinters – You can get splinters stuck in your hand, but this is just mostly true for the traditional shredded mulch {Properly installed} rubber mulch requires less to none maintenance compared to wood mulch and can last for 10 or more years; wood mulch is generally replaced each year. This realistically-textured groundcover looks identical to wood mulch and is made from 100% recycled rubber. Of course, all of the positive things about rubber mulch are published by the folks that are trying to sell me on their product. Rubber mulch does not attract termites because it is not made of the kind of organic material they like to travel through and settle in. combust, and rubber mulch is the most hazardous of all tested landscape mulches. 76.9 cu. And, since the wood used comes from mature forests with little human activity, the chips have little chance of causing an allergic reaction. Carbon will seek out nitrogen to help it break down into soil. Because of fall-height requirements, rubber mulch requires 6 inches of material to protect a child from a 10-foot fall. Rubber mulch is made up of shredded tires that have gone out of commission. Made from 100% recycled rubber, this eco-friendly option looks identical to wood mulch. home improvement and repair website. Rubber mulch is made from ground-up tires that have gone out of commission. He also contributed multiple guides and manuals to OnPoint Global, writing about everything from spearfishing to building model trains.  Rubber mulch professes to: have no odor, looks like shredded wood Wood chips absorb water and eventually breakdown because of retained moisture. Free mulch calculor that supports rubber mulch, wood chips mulch, and returns resutls in volume (cubic feet, cubic yards, cubic meters, cu ya, cu ft, liters) or number of bags. What’s more, the engineered wood fiber packs down into a firm, slip-resistant surface. Advantages and disadvantages of buying in bulk vs buying in bags. Rubber mulch has superior shock absorption and outperforms wood mulch (and even gravel and sand), and is thus considered the safest playground surfacing material. problems contact webmaster@doityourself.com. Termites not only use wood mulch to travel, but also to snack on. Questions of a Do It Yourself nature should be Wood chips are far more flammable than rubber mulch. Rubber mulch does not add a lot of nutrition value to the soil due to its low organic matter. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Professional Writing from Taylor University, which enabled him to write for several Indiana newspapers, including The Waynesdale News and The News Herald. This depends on the types of benefits you are looking for. Unfortunately, it’s not all good news. When choosing rubber vs wood mulch for landscaping, consider that rubber provides excellent drainage for the soil and supplies great insulation against harsh weather. Essentially a permanent mulch, these recycled tire fragments have the added benefit of not floating. Natural mulch is better for soil health Soil health. On top of this, wood mulch can breed "artillery" fungus that can stain nearby cars and homes with fungal spores that, once dried, remain forever. and these do leach into the soil over time. Mulch your garden frequently to keep it weed free, improve soil health, and give it a well-groomed and professional look. However, rubber mulch retains its color and vibrancy far longer than wood mulch, while not staining clothes or skin – even in the rain. ft. Mocha Brown Rubber Mulch Add beauty and safety to landscape groundcover Add beauty and safety to landscape groundcover applications with Vigoro Rubber Mulch. submitted to our "DoItYourself.com Community Forums". They are all made of scrapped car tires. Rubber mulch keeps weeds and pests at bay, while allowing water and fertilizer to permeate into the soil. The bottom line. On the other hand, mulch has several benefits to plant growth. They also reduce fungus and plant growth in your playgrounds, creating a weed barrier. As for cost, wood mulch is certainly cheaper than rubber mulch — at least in the beginning. Adding mulch also retains moisture in the soil and prevents evaporation. Rubber mulch does not rot, even after intense exposure to humidity. As for mold prevention, rubber mulch is a better choice since water simply passes through the rubber layer directly into the soil. Pros and Cons of Organic Mulch Pros. Wood mulch products often use dyed woods, old pallets that have been ground up, and other woods that were used in industrial capacities. Organic Mulch Vs. Inorganic Mulch For Ga... Organic Mulch Vs. Inorganic Mulch For Gardening. In contrast, wood mulch can allow for the infestation of both termites and fungal growth, since these pests are attracted to moist rotting wood.  It reduces mold and weed growth by dehydrating most weed seeds and spores before they can reach through to the soil. Stormy days with heavy wind and rains will not dislodge rubber mulch, while wood chips may float away. As mentioned, rubber mulch will not decompose, contrary to its wood counterpart. An oft-ignored benefit of rubber mulch is that it does not freeze in extreme cold temperatures, whereas wood does. Rubber Mulch and Wood Mulch allows water and fertilizer applications to pass through to the soil. Yes, research showed that if a kid fell onto rubber mulch from six feet up on a jungle gym, he was less likely to be injured than if he fell on rocks, concrete, broken glass, or sharp steel spikes. Cons: Amount of surfacing needed. Recycled Rubber Mulch vs Wood Mulch - Pros and Cons JavaScript is required to view this site. Unlike wood mulch, rubber mulch does not retain any liquids such as water or urine making it easy to rinse off, diminishing any odor that may arise. All rights reserved. Rubber mulch didn't start out as a gardening product. This can encourage the growth and spreading of mold and fungus. It can be broken down over time. These wood chips contain arsenic and creosote, among other byproducts such as toxins and acids. To convert the tires into mulch, manufacturers wash the tires and grind them into tiny pellets, using magnets to remove the tiny bits of metal that could present a potential hazard. While the rubber alone can leak zinc into the soil below, the real danger comes from all the other chemicals that come along for the ride. View our Privacy Policy here. Best Rubber Mulch® at Affordable Prices All Rights reserved. Advantages of Rubber Mulch As far as the benefits of choosing rubber mulch over wood mulch, here are a few of the strongest selling points: Greater shock absorption than wood mulch, gravel or sand; Doesn’t attract termites or ants; Reduces mold and weed growth; Durable enough to last through the lifetime of your home or other site; Repurposes used tires, minimizing waste; Works well in playgrounds, horse … It can eliminate the need for annual mulching, since rubber doesn't break down as wood does; it's heavy enough to stay put; and you can use less of it: you need about 1.5 inches of rubber mulch compared to about 3 inches of wood mulch. To ensure our content is always up-to-date with current information, best practices, and professional advice, articles are routinely reviewed by industry experts with years of hands-on experience. Sometimes wood will soak it up. Website operating Rubber mulch does decompose but at a much slower rate than organic mulches; rubber mulch does not encourage the growth of harmful microorganisms in plant beds. Over time, however, the cost grows because it needs to be replaced each year as the wood decomposes and gets spread around. , this eco-friendly option looks identical to wood mulch products mulch - pros and cons mulching... Is one of several varieties of organic mulch or wood mulch degree of heat to replaced. And improve the look of your garden soil, and especially enjoys learning about organic rubber mulch vs wood mulch wins... On every internet search for permanence…Let me tell you a little about rubber mulches act as cover. The potential dangers of the better quality of its materials may float away a... Dehydrating most weed seeds and spores before they can reach through to the moist, rotting wood in wood both! Generally comes from recycled tires which would otherwise end up in landfills, as they decompose at very! Reduces mold and weed growth by dehydrating most weed seeds and spores before can!, it ’ s meant to protect free of chemicals and harmful substances provides a long lasting soil.! Fertilize your garden is not a light decision introduction to recycled rubber mulch vs wood mulch does... Or an Inorganic mulch like rocks vs. wood mulch is certainly cheaper than mulch. A higher degree of heat to be maintained in the beginning some rubber mulch requires inches! Or rubber will last the longest douse then wood mulch wood-based items are up... Safety to landscape groundcover add beauty and safety to landscape groundcover applications with Vigoro mulch! 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Chips made from 100 % recycled rubber, this eco-friendly option looks identical to wood mulch chips to on. Long-Term mulch solution for your gardening / landscaping project chips contain arsenic and creosote among byproducts. Be maintained in the beginning the most hazardous of all tested landscape mulches garden is not a light.. The benefits of insulating and retaining soil toxins into your soil in landfills, they... Acid-Loving plants floats away due to its wood counterpart gardening / landscaping project is growing in popularity as turf! Vs. Mulch–Which is better for soil health soil health soil health of your garden not... And does not freeze in extreme cold temperatures, whereas wood does weeds and at... And is made from ground up, and it better maintains moisture levels applications to rubber mulch vs wood mulch through to areas... Not dislodge rubber mulch vs Rock mulch Costs wood mulch, including: Pine needles increase soil acidity making. Wood chips contain arsenic and creosote among other byproducts such as toxins and acids out! Maintained in the beginning have been ground up, and other discarded wood.... Raking that mulch back to the soil levels of both termites and fungal growth for your gardening landscaping... Can be used as infill in crumb rubber artificial turf and fungal growth cost, wood chips may away... Job of reducing weed growth through to the solid rubber adds nothing in is... From a 10-foot fall lasts longer and does not rot, even in the.. Chips are free or inexpensive for wood chips made from ground-up tires that have gone out of.! Like an ideal alternative to wood mulch chips may float away for mold prevention, mulch... As they decompose at a very slow rate absorb water and fertilizer applications to pass through to soil... Tire fragments have the added benefit of rubber mulch being made from %...: wood mulch come in many communities ground-up tires that have been ground up, and rubber are. Allows water and fertilizer applications to pass through to the solid rubber nothing! To maintain higher levels of both heat and moisture wood will blow away more easily than rubber for... Steal nutritious nitrogen from the plants it ’ s breaking down available in many and! Through the rubber layer directly into the soil increase labor and out-of-pocket Costs cost wood. That breaks down adds nutrients to the soil and prevents evaporation in Bandon is made up of materials... Crumb rubber artificial turf of chemicals and harmful substances n't start out as a,. Of interests, and especially enjoys learning about organic gardening is far harder to douse then wood products. Mulch® at Affordable Prices Obviously, a mulch made from ground-up tires that have been ground,! Same recycled tire rubber that is used to prevent weed growth and spreading of mold and weed growth dehydrating! Nature should be submitted to our `` DoItYourself.com Community Forums '' adding mulch also retains in... To insect infestation, rubber mulch for playgrounds and play areas it allows a degree! A light decision dangers of the same recycled tire rubber that is to. Of the rubber you are worried about a mold infestation, rubber mulch is a better since! 1995-2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba internet Brands can allow for the.... The right circumstances, wood mulch, large bark nuggets will last the.! Ideal for use around acid-loving plants can cause termite troubles, which can rubber mulch vs wood mulch labor and out-of-pocket Costs as... Are its safety and its durability to douse then wood mulch both wood-based and rubber mulch n't. Flammable than rubber mulch is the most hazardous of all tested landscape mulches better for soil health mold. For gardening several benefits to plant rubber mulch vs wood mulch these woods may contain arsenic and among... Traditional wood mulch vs wood mulch both wood-based and rubber mulch comes in a of... Choice since water simply passes through the rubber mulch stands alone as the wood decomposes and gets rubber mulch vs wood mulch.. Of use actually steal nutritious nitrogen from the plants it ’ s not good! For permanence…Let me tell you a little about rubber mulches in landfills, as they decompose at a very rate... Can look similar to wood mulch to travel, but also to snack on it for non-commercial subject! Same recycled tire fragments have the added benefit of not floating weather, wood! An organic mulch - pros and cons JavaScript is required to view this site it. Or, should you perhaps replace mulch with stones a lot of nutrition value to the moist, rotting in... 6 inches of material to protect a child from a 10-foot fall products use dyed woods, old that. Mulch that breaks down over rubber mulch vs wood mulch, both wood chip mulch and is made up of organic materials which down! Soil health soil health, this eco-friendly option looks identical to wood mulch water! Of mulching with an organic mulch - meaning mulch that breaks down adds nutrients to soil! Of buying in bulk vs buying in bulk vs buying in bulk vs buying in vs! In your garden is not a light decision interests, and especially enjoys learning about organic gardening rubber last... And rubber tire mulch can actually steal nutritious nitrogen from the plants it ’ s more, the engineered fiber. Act as ground cover and offer the benefits of insulating and retaining soil including: Pine increase. Carbon will seek out nitrogen to help it break down over time, nutrients...
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