New Program in Blakely Recycles Tree Limbs into Mulch

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The city of Blakely is sending fallen limbs and trees back where they came from. Early Tree and Limb is using a horizontal grinder called "The Beast," and it transforms fallen limbs and other yard debris into mulch.

Robert Murkerson says the project is just another way of making use of resources. "!t's just a good way to recycle the material that we have that used to get buried, used to get burned." He explains that it's all part of an effort in Blakely to clean things up and keep yard debris from taking up space in the landfill.

"There has been a big build-up of debris that is being brought to them not only by residential customers but commercial companies, other tree companies in the area."

Early Tree and Landscaping is teaming up with the city of Blakely to reduce that build-up, find a new purpose for those limbs.

Just eleven miles north of Blakely, White Oak Pastures uses 80 to 90 percent of the recycled mulch from Blakely in its compost.

Tripp Eldridge, Organic Farm Manager tells us, "We use the wood chip mulch as a base layer and we incorporate bone fragments from our own shipping that we do here on site, and that provides a good carbon-rich base layer."

That base layer is the foundation for the compost they use to render waste on the farm. Recycling the debris is another step away from throwing easily degradable materials into landfills, Eldridge says.

"Nationwide, about 25 percent of our total waste stream is organic, either food waste or yard waste and none of that needs to take up space in the landfill."

At White Oak Pastures, the carbon found in the Blakely mulch is the perfect balance for composting.

Eldridge says, "We need that carbon to nitrogen balance. A lot of the things we're trying ot compost have a lot of nitrogen so we need a lot more-30 times as much carbon to balance that."

The recycled mulch is also balancing the life cycle. When the compost returns to soil , the process starts all over again. It's a comprehensive new system from which the city of Blakely, and the earth, can benefit .