California Department of Transportation
 

Fiber

Fiber is used as a carrying agent and a mulch in hydroseeding. Application rate varies based upon fiber material, slope roughness, slope steepness, seed type. Select one of the fiber products from the detailed information provided below.

When to Use this Product?

Specify fiber when filling out the Hydroseed and Incorporate Materials specifications.

Fiber Types

Click here to view a chart comparing the benefits and limitations of various fiber materials.

If you are uncertain which fiber to select, specify wood or a wood/cellulose combination.

Wood Fiber

Wood fiber is manufactured from wood or wood waste from lumber mills or urban sources. Wood fiber is applied at a total rate of 600 to 2,000 pounds/acre, either in a single or two-step application.

Benefits:

  • Wood fiber biodegrades more slowly than paper.
  • Wood fibers are longer than paper. These fibers mesh together to reduce erosion.
  • Wood requires less moisture to apply than paper.
  • Wood holds more moisture and releases moisture more slowly than paper .
  • Wood permits more air to pass through to seed. At rates up to 3000 lbs/acre, wood permits air to pass to the seed to prevent die off.

Limitations:

  • Wood fiber costs more per pound than paper fiber.

Cellulose Fiber

Cellulose fiber contains fibers of shorter length than wood fiber mulches and is typically made from recycled newsprint, magazine, or other waste paper sources. Cellulose mulch has shorter fiber lengths than wood fiber mulches because they are produced from fiber initially manufactured to create smooth surfaces for paper products and other non-mulch uses. When applied, the shorter fibers of cellulose products may clump rather than interlock.

Paper fiber is typically applied at the rate of 2,000 to 4,000 pounds/acre.

Benefits:

  • Cellulose fiber costs less than wood fiber.

Limitations:

  • Applied at higher rates, cellulose fiber may create a "paper mache" type layer, leading to poor seed germination.

Cellulose and Wood Fiber Blend

Blended mulches of 50% wood fiber and 50% cellulose fiber combine the performance characteristics of wood fiber, which interlocks for erosion protection, and the economy of clean, recycled paper fiber for bulk.

Cellulose/Wood blended fiber is applied at a total rate of 600 to 2,000 pounds/acre, either in a single or two-step application.

Benefits:

  • Less expensive than wood mulch alone.
  • Combines the erosion protection benefits of wood with the cost efficiencies of paper.

Limitations:

  • More expensive that cellulose mulch used alone.

Alternate Fiber

Alternate fiber is composed of long strand, whole natural fibers made from clean straw, cotton, corn, or other natural feed stock.

Alternate fiber is applied at a total rate of 600 to 2,000 pounds/acre, either in a single or two-step application.

Guidance:

References: