Wood chips are one of the best options if you want to make your garden better. There are various ways to use wood chips for the garden. Gardening enthusiasts can use wood chips for multiple things. However, before opting to use them, there are some other crucial things that you need to understand.

One important thing is to know that wood chips come from different kinds of trees, and they come in different shapes and sizes. All of these wood chips can have other characteristics, and therefore, you need to conduct your research to get the best out of these wood chips.

One thing gardeners need to determine is if they want to buy wood chips from the market or if they should shred materials from the garden. Well, surprisingly, when it comes to getting wood chips for your garden, it is often better to opt for the latter option. Getting wood chips from your garden is a sustainable choice for most garden owners.

Why is Investing in a Garden Shredder a Good Idea?

Investing in a garden shredder is a great idea as it will help you in cost-cutting. Besides, it will also help you to avoid the wood chips available in the market that are stored in plastics and have been processed in a lesser environment-friendly way.

Garden shredders are one-time investments that can help you get wood chips directly from your garden. You will also have better control over the materials of the wood chips for the garden. There are different ways to use these wood chips for the garden. Here we have mentioned some such tips to help you.

Why is Investing in a Garden Shredder a Good Idea

How to Use Wood Chips for the Garden?

There are many uses for wood chips in your garden. Here, we will tell you about the eight best ways to use wood chips for your garden before we go on to describe these usages to help the gardening beginner readers here.

  • Mulching around the plants
  • Creating new growing areas with the organic materials
  • Adding them to your compost pile
  • Growing mushrooms in your garden
  • Making Biochar
  • Creating new wildlife habitats
  • Creating natural pathways
  • Recreational ground cover for the kids.

Now that you know about the eight best ways to use wood mulch in your garden, here is how to use wood mulch in the best way to get the best benefits out of them.

1. Use Wooden Chips as Mulch

Use Wooden Chips as Mulch

Using wood chips as mulch is one of the best use of wood chips for the garden. Use the wood chips you bought from the market or shredded from your own garden as mulch in the growing areas of your garden. Contrary to popular belief, mulching wood chips will help to increase the level of nitrogen in your garden. It helps to increase the acidity in the garden soil. This ultimately helps to reduce the pest attacks in your garden.

Covering the bare areas of the garden with the bigger wooden chips will help you to save your garden for a long time from the attack of pests. As the bigger pieces will take more time to decay, it will also help you to prevent erosion of your garden soil from wind and rain. Erosion control helps to maintain the landscapes of the garden properly, which in turn keeps the plants in the garden healthier for a long time. It will also help to prevent mud accumulation in the monsoon season, helping you to keep the surroundings clean.

Nitrogen Sequestration for Wood Chips in The Garden

Because wood chips decrease the level of nitrogen in the garden soil, gardeners need to understand where they should use them as mulch. The problem with using wood chips as mulch is that while decaying, it often uses nitrogen in the soil for a long period of time. It usually has detrimental effects on the plants growing around the mulched area.

Is seen more often than not that gardening enthusiasts place non-composed wooden chips around the annual plants in a garden. However, this might not be the best idea for the plants for the same reason. The reduction of nitrogen in the soil might compromise the growth of the plants.

Therefore, gardeners are advised to use a combination of other organic, nitrogen-rich materials while using wood chips as mulch in the garden to keep the nitrogen level maintained in the garden soil.

2. Composing Wood Chips

Composing Wood Chips

When you want to use wood chips for your garden, you need to make sure the chips are composed before you lay them on the ground. Wood chips are very good for your garden soil. However, as we have already mentioned, laying them down directly in the soil where herbaceous plants are growing is probably not the best idea.

When you already have composed wooden chips, start using them while sending another batch to compose. This will help you to avoid the issues that occur with the reduction of nitrogen levels in the soil. However, the nutrient-rich properties of the wood chips will increase soil fertility.

You should always remember how the smaller chips will break down quicker than the bigger ones. Therefore putting them to compose before laying them on the ground will get you quicker results than composing the bigger chips. In addition, wood chips are carbon-rich materials, and you should always cover them up with greener, nitrogen-rich content for the best results.

Once you have composted the wood chips with different organic matters, the newly created compost will be a valuable soil amendment in the garden. 

3. Using Them to Make New Growing Areas

Using Them to Make New Growing Areas

As beneficiary as composting the wood chips can be, another amazing use of the wood chips for the garden can be composting them directly in the soil to make new areas grow. Using wooden chips directly in a soil bed where there are no plants around can help you grow new areas organically.

One of the easiest and cheapest ways to create new growing areas in your garden for your plants is not to dig different areas. This will involve layering the area with wood chips and other nitrogen-rich green materials that will help to decompose the chips.

An area layered with all the carbon-rich materials like wood chips and nitrogen-rich materials like vegetable scraps, grass clipping, and manures will be perfect. Then you can top it with topsoil, compost, and more. Later you can directly plant the plants on the topsoil. You can get all these materials from your own garden.

4. Using Chips to Make Biochar

Using Chips to Make Biochar

Among all the options for using wood chips for your garden, we have covered the wood chips were increasing the soil fertility or improving the soil in other ways. A final way to add organic matter to improve the fertility of your garden is by making Biochar. The wood chips can also be used for this as well.

Biochar is charcoal, and it is common knowledge among gardeners how useful it can be for your garden. Charcoals are enriched in amazing nutrients that are great for your plants. Making it can be helpful as it can make your soil more fertile, improve the drainage system in your garden, and more.

This can be buried in the soil to make them better, as it can also increase the soil carbon to help you fight the climate crisis. Try using wood chips to create Biochar for your garden.

5. Growing Mushrooms

Growing Mushrooms

You might not have thought about this amazing use of wood chips for the garden. If you want to grow mushrooms in your garden as well, using wooden chips is the best medium you can use for that. There are gardening enthusiasts who are focused on food production in their gardens. If you are among them, use the wood chips for that.

Using wooden chips is a perfect replacement for soil in your mushroom garden. Lay these wood chips in the shade beneath a big tree or shrub. You can also try to find other shady and damp areas like this. This will invite mushrooms to grow in these environments. In such moist areas, mushrooms can thrive and bear fruits. There are plenty of different mushroom varieties in the world. Some of them are even poisonous. Therefore, you must study the mushrooms properly to grow them in your garden.

6. Using Wood Chips for Garden Pathways

Using Wood Chips for Garden Pathways

This is another amazing use of wood chips for the garden. You can make the garden landscape look better with wood chips. Despite using wood chips around herbaceous plants can be a bad idea, you can always use them to border your garden and create a pathway which can change the landscape completely in a better way.

The larger wood chips that take more time to decay are perfect for a garden pathway. These larger chips will last longer and take a lot of wear and tear before breaking down. However, sometimes the smaller chips are also used to create pathways for the garden.

However, there is a downside to this. The wooden chips will often break down, and you will need to replace them oftentimes. However, you can recycle the broken chips around your vegetable beds. Using this broken-down mulch around your vegetable garden is a great idea.

7. For Recreational Area Ground Cover

For Recreational Area Ground Cover.png

If you have a children’s park or a recreational area around your garden, you can use these wooden chips as ground cover in those areas. Unfortunately, this can break down over the weeks, and you will have to replace them with new ones as well. However, you can use these broken-down wood chips for mulch in your vegetable garden as well. Besides, they can also be used in another eco-friendly way in the hard paved areas. This is another amazing way to use wood chips for your garden.

8. Create New Habitats for The Wildlife in Your Garden

Create New Habitats for The Wildlife in Your Garden

Lastly, the wood chips can also be an amazing option for you. You can pile them up in one corner of your garden. There is a range of creatures that can be found in your garden that can benefit from the use of wood chips in your garden. It can help you grow and maintain the wildlife in your garden as well. The birds and some insects that will take shelter in your garden due to this are going to help you to keep your garden pest free in the long run. The best part about this is you don’t have to spend a lot to buy pesticides for your garden, as these birds will prey on these pests attacking your plants. This tactic, therefore, can help you prevent pest attacks in your garden.


These are some of the best ways to use wood chips for the garden. Using wood chips or other organic materials can improve the performance of your garden soil. Sometimes you can even create amazing fertilizers for trees and shrubs without chemicals.

Here in this article, we have discussed how to compose wooden chips and how they can improve soil performance. This article talks about how creating pathways with wooden chips can turn into a recyclable process that can improve the look of your garden landscapes.

You will also get to know the benefits of wooden chips in creating habitats for the wildlife in your garden from this article. However, there are other ways to use wood chips in your garden. You can find out about them by subscribing to us.  

Katherine Griffiths

Katherine Griffiths, brings over 15 years of experience in eco-friendly and sustainable practices. She has been a passionate advocate for sustainable living since her early career. With a degree of MSc in Environmental Policy and Management, she has contributed to significant research in renewable energy solutions. She has also worked with various NGOs and environmental startups. Beyond her professional pursuits, she is an avid gardener and enjoys exploring the British countryside.

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