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View Full Version : Shredded Hardwood for Arena Footing?



DressageDayDreamer
Mar. 18, 2012, 09:21 AM
Anyone tried it? Comments?

msj
Mar. 18, 2012, 01:54 PM
Yes, I've used it (hardwood bark mulch)very successfully in my outdoor arena. It does biodegrade and eventually will get somewhat slick after a rain after several yrs (~7-8 yrs)so you will have to eventually scrape it all out and redo. I think I did it after ~9 yrs. The best thing about it is NO DUST and you never need to water!!

My arena is tiled and graded and ~ 220' x 80'. The base was compacted with a vibrating compactor-you could feel the vibration at the house and my neighbor said his windows actually shook! :eek: Anyway, then the contractor put down about 3" of stone dust and then the bark mulch about 3" deep.

When we scraped it after 9 yrs, I had him put it in a large pile and I used it for mulch for all the gardens. It did last about 5+ yrs.

When I replaced it, I couldn't find a hardwood mulch again so I used cedar playground chips. I figured if it was used at playgrounds it wouldn't hurt the horse and it didn't. I could NOT find a bulk supplier though and ended up using bagged chips, which while much easier to spread and get a consistent depth, it was very expensive but, what the heck, I'm worth it(like the L'Oreal commercial:D) and so is my horse. :yes:

FYI: My arena was not used hard as I was generally the only person riding and jumping. About once/month in the spring to fall, I'd have a trainer come up and have others come for lessons but that was only for about 5 yrs maybe. I've been at the farm for 22 yrs now and probably could redo the arena again but I no longer ride so I haven't put the $ back into the ring. :(

Ravencrest_Camp
Mar. 18, 2012, 02:31 PM
How do you ensure that there is no walnut in the shredded walnut?

I have seen a horse go instantly and irreversibly lame after coming into contact with hardwood shavings.

msj
Mar. 18, 2012, 02:57 PM
How do you ensure that there is no walnut in the shredded walnut?

I have seen a horse go instantly and irreversibly lame after coming into contact with hardwood shavings.

I would think a person choosing to use a hardwood shaving would have enough sense to ask the provider to make certain there was no black walnut used. I would guess in the instance you are talking about the person who put down the shavings with black walnut in it, did not know any better.

That was just one of the reasons I was unable to get a good hardwood mulch when I needed to redo my ring. The other reason was finding a decent mulch that was shredded enough without finding tree limbs in it! :eek: