Chipping trimmings

A few months ago we picked up this used DR 3 point chipper. Darn thing is super handy. Eats up to 4" diameter wood like butter. Especially the soft freshly cut green wood of fruit tree trimmings. We chip all the wood right back into the orchard. Wouldnt be worth the price if you are a small operation i guess. We have about 200 trees in the ground now and were really having a hard time dealing with the mountain of trimmed wood. Burning isnt a great option for us, here in Phoenix its legally frowned upon and the ash has to be disposed of because its not good in our high pH soil.

What is everyone elses method for disposing of trimmings?


Mostly burning, though I wish I’d been able to chip these.


Holy moly, what a bonfire that must have been. None of the bigger stuff was any use for fireplaces/heating wood? We usually cut up and store anything above 4" in diameter for use in cooking/heating. But it looks like in your part of the country there is abundant fuel wood.

I used to have an Brush Bandit estate chipper with a hydraulic feed (with reverse) and a 24 HP Onan engine. Hated the thing- too noisy, too much work and too expensive to maintain- and it was a relatively well engineered chipper.

Now I dump them in the woods near my property after having my helper bundle them up and load them in my truck. Every year he spends a few hours breaking up the bundles and spreading them out so they look more natural and break down a bit quicker.

About a third of the time I spread them out in the woods of a customer or put them in an existing brush pile. Sometimes they periodically have someone chip up such piles.

I probably deal with at least 10 times as much brush as you do but I live in a different area where there are places to hide brush while it breaks down.


Will wood chips around fruit trees harbor disease? I worry I may be introducing disease by accepting wood chips for tree services. They also seem to give mice and voles cover.

Amandioranch, nice chipper. I have a smaller one that gets plenty of use but it is a slow process. The chips make a nice ground cover, reduces weed growth and eventually turns into nice soil. What I don’t chip goes into a brush pile and some heats the house. Wood is a useful resource in the garden.

Those sources are the ones I use for wood chips as top mulch and haven’t noticed anything bad.Knock on wood.They should be kept several inches away from the trunks. Brady

Package those apple chips in ziplock bags and sell the for smoking fuel. Apple smoke is one of the best!

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For a residential lot, electric chipper from Harbor Freight. It’s amazing the number of full-sized trees I’ve fed through that poor thing, does a good job on corn stalks also. What doesn’t fit down its throat gets turned into firewood for our fireplace on the days the AQMD allows fires.

How they’re currently treating burn piles in California…

Wow, you must be retired. I bought one of those and then sold it on Craigslist after using it twice. It produced lovely fine chips, but at the expense of all of my leisure time. Ain’t nobody got time for that!

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It’s faster than cutting them up and putting a little in the green waste trash can each week until the pile is gone. I know what nice chippers are, at Scout Camp we use a Vermeer that can take 14" thick tree trunks and spits out chips like a fire hose, and the electric is nothing like that. But for our limited use it doesn’t take up much room, starts every time, is quiet, and gives the non-producing fruit trees fair warning when I shred the losers in front of them as an example of what happens around here to trees that don’t produce…


Those fords are nice for those implements like that. My old Farmall M does not have 3 point. Most of those DR chippers are not setup to work with pto like that so that’s a very nice setup. I think you have a long term piece of equipment there.

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Ive seen some decent fast hitch to 3 point conversions done on Farmalls. Love those tractors.

My wifes father worked on the assembly line for International Harvester all his life. First in Illinois with tractors and then after the company was split up he went to work the Navistar line (international heavy duty trucks) in Ohio. Shes a “if it aint red, leave it in the shed” kinda girl. About divorced me when I brought this little blue ford home last year.

To keep the peace ive had to promise her a IH tractor. Darned if they arent hard as hell to find out here in AZ. Hoping to find a 60-70s utility model of about 35-40 hp diesel. Little blue ford is great for cleaning out stalls but it really aint up for plowing or any real heavy work.

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Yes my farmall M is left over from my dirt farming days. They wont stop rather the person driving will first. I would start plowing and eat dirt all day and just stop long enough to fuel up. That farmall never had a problem. It’s a 1941 or 43 I believe and still running without a rebuild. My ex girlfriend and her family were like your wife in they only like red. The ford 9n and 8n are plentiful around here and I have often thought they make more sense for what I do now lol.

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Those 9N’s are plentiful out here and cheap. I thought about them but just dont need another gasoline powered machine around here to fuss with. Here in the heat gas goes bad fast. Anything that sits ends up needing the carburetor cleaned. Diesel is good and stable here tho.

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We add this to the fuel in the off season I’m not sure how it works in heat but it works great for subzero fuel storage.

Ive tried sta-bil. Helps a little but not a ton.

All of mine gets converted in a pit into agricultural charcoal. Just finished making a cubic yard this morning. This is the stuff we call biochar. It mostly then gets added to compost piles and gets placed on the ground under mulches.

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Wood makes great ditch filler as well. Then once the ditch is full push the dirt in on top. Unlike hay most of the wood decomposes into soil without the ditch sinking back in a lot.

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