Does anyone know where I can get free wood chips in the Brighton, MI or Livingston Co., MI area? I only need enough for 4 to 5 small flower beds.
By Linda from Brighton, MI
Why not call your local town highway department. The highway department picks up roadside brush and they feed dead tree branches through the wood chipper. I know you could probably get a lot of free wood chips by giving the supervisor a small gratuity (tip), so the guys can buy a pizza for their lunch break.
I don't think city, county, or state employees are allowed to take tips. You could also contract the tree services in your area. Check on Craigslist or freecycle and see if anybody has some wood chips to give away. Or even post on those sites that you need some. However, be aware that when it comes to obtaining free things, most of the time you will be expected to haul it. In the case of wood chips, probably bag it too.
I don't think city, county, or state employees are supposed to take tips. You could also check with a local tree service, or on craigslist or freecycle asking if anybody has any wood chips to give away. Be aware that when you get free stuff you usually have to haul it and in the case of wood chips some people might require you to bag them.
When my husband and I owned a 3-bedroom home we were looking for some large boulders to be placed along the back property line. This was to stop kids from trespassing through our back yard. Our back yard was near the fire hall and the kids used our yard to get from one street to another. At the time our town highway department wanted to get rid of several very large rocks. My husband talked with one of the guys in charge and he said that he didn't know what to do with the rocks, and they would have to be hauled away. My husband said that he could use them for his property. This man drove a huge forklift, made two trips and picked up each of the rocks and placed them where we wanted them on our property line.
He busted his rear end and did all that work and we gave him some money so he could buy some pizza for him and the guys.
One hand washes another. My husband and I don't want to be cheap and we believe in tipping!
I'm only going by what different government employees have told me. I use a city operated paratransit service and sometimes a passenger will offer a driver a candy bar, and gets turned down because they aren't supposed to accept gratuities. It even says that in the passenger handbook.
Check out your city online.. I found chips from our http://www.destinationoakland.com/Lists/News/DispForm.aspx?ID=52
So Google search your county, or even try craigslist a lot on there as well.
I live in upstate NY and years ago, Niagara Mohawk used to cut, trim and remove trees in the springtime that were growing too high or into their wires. They would use a wood chipper afterwards and if you ask them, that might still be available. The way I've gotton wood chips lately is that I live in a rural area and whenever trees on my property are uprooted in a storm, I have the Tree Removal Guy put all the wood chips under the pine trees. I'd ask Tree Removal Guys from the yellow pages what their policy is.
Our town, county and local dump offer mulch free to it's residents. Just ask. If they don't have a recycling program like that in your area, contact your utility company and ask them who does their tree trimming or what do they do with their shavings. One word of caution, if using fresh wood shavings; the mulch will get hot as it decomposes if put on too thick. Allow the mulch to sit in a pile for a few months to prevent it from harming your plants, or just use an inch or two at a time. You can lay black and white newspaper under the mulch to help block weeds so you don't have to use as much mulch.
Don't know for your area, but our city water department makes mulch out of discarded vegetation. We can buy it for a pretty cheap price, have to pick up yourself tho. Check your city out!
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