10 Surprising Ways You Can Use Wood Chips

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Wood chips have a long and varied history of uses, from cooking to fuel production to landscaping. But did you know that there are many other surprising and innovative ways to use wood chips? In this article, we’ll explore some of these lesser-known wood chip uses and their benefits.

As Animal Bedding

Wood chips make an excellent bedding material for animals such as chickens, rabbits, and horses. They are absorbent, inexpensive, and prevent the growth of bacteria and mold. They can also be composted after use.

In Mushroom Growing

Mushroom growers often use wood chips as a substrate for growing certain varieties of mushrooms, such as shiitake. Wood chips provide a good balance of nutrients and moisture for mushroom growth.

In Soil Improvement

Wood chips can be used to improve soil health by adding organic matter and increasing soil structure. Wood chips slowly release nutrients into the soil as they decompose, and they also help with water retention.

In Smokehouse Cooking

Wood chips are a popular choice for imparting smoky flavor to meats and other foods in a smokehouse. Hickory, mesquite, and applewood are some of the popular wood chip options for smoking.

In Pathways and Mulching

Wood chips can be used as a natural and attractive alternative to concrete or asphalt in pathways and trails. They are also useful as a mulch around trees and garden beds, keeping weeds at bay and preventing erosion.

In Art and Crafts

Wood chips and shavings can be used in a variety of art and craft projects, such as making paper, creating sculptures, and even weaving baskets. Their natural texture and color make them versatile and appealing materials.

In Erosion Control

Wood chips can help prevent soil erosion on sloped sites and embankments. They absorb water and slow its movement, protecting soil from being washed away.

In Pest Control

Certain types of wood chips, such as cedar and cypress, contain natural oils and resins that repel insects and other pests. These chips can be used to create a natural barrier against pests in gardens, around homes, and in other outdoor spaces.

In Energy Production

Wood chips are sometimes used as a fuel source for generating electricity and heat. They are especially popular in regions with abundant forest resources and limited access to other types of fuel.

In Water Filtration

Wood chips can also be used in water filtration systems to remove impurities and improve water quality. They are effective at removing metals, organic compounds, and other contaminants.

Concluding Thoughts

Wood chips may seem like a simple material, but they have a surprisingly wide range of uses and benefits. From animal bedding to water filtration and beyond, there are many ways to incorporate wood chips into your daily life.


Q: Are wood chips safe for animals to use as bedding?
A: Yes, wood chips are a safe and effective bedding material for animals. Make sure to use chips that have not been treated with chemicals or other additives.

Q: What types of wood chips are best for smoking?
A: Hickory, mesquite, and applewood are all popular choices for smoking meats and other foods. Choose a wood chip that complements the flavor of the food you are cooking.

Q: Can wood chips be used in hydroponics?
A: Yes, wood chips can be used as a growing medium in some hydroponic systems. They provide a good balance of nutrients and moisture for plant growth.


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