Recycled tires offer an alternative to wood mulch

You might think the only way to recycle old tires is to fasten a rope or chain to them and hang them from a tree. In fact, there is an entire industry devoted to breaking down and re-using tires in a variety of products.

Ironically, one of the most popular uses for recycled tires is as an alternative to traditional, organic mulch. Liberty Tire Recycling, responsible for recycling approximately one third of America’s discarded tires — turning 130 million tires a year into 1.5 billion pounds of rubber to be used for “innovative, eco-friendly products.”

Rubber mulch from discarded tires has several advantages over traditional mulch:

  • Longer lasting— regular organic mulch generally needs to be refreshed and/or replaced once a year or more.
  • More cost-effective— although per cubic foot more expensive, because rubber mulch lasts so much longer (some products claim to last more than a decade), it works out to be easier on the wallet.
  • Less labor-intensive— rather than re-mulching and over-mulching every season or every year, rubber mulch requires much less maintenance.
  • More green— store-bought mulch is made from trees cut down just for that purpose; using rubber mulch not only keeps tons of scrap tires out of landfills, it also conserves the environment by offering an alternative to tree-based mulch.

For more information on rubber mulch, try these resources:

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