What You Need To Know About Portland Chip Drop

Serving Families Throughout Portland & the Pacific Northwest

Located in Beaverton, Oregon, General Tree Service serves the entire Portland-Vancouver area and is providing the following information about Chip Drop as a courtesy to our customers.

What is Chip Drop?

Chip Drop matches people who want free or inexpensive wood chips with Portland Oregon arborists and tree companies who have a constant supply and would prefer to see them put to good use.  People looking for free or cheap wood chips can sign up on the Portland Chip Drop website for a load.

Please note-Arborists chips are not like the bags of mulch you would buy at a store. Go to the Portland Chip Drop website to see photos of actual loads of arborists chips so you can see the difference.  It’s normal to have some leave and pine needles in the load.  A typical load contains approximately 50% wood chips and 50% green leafy materials, like pine needles.  There’s a small percent (5% or less) that is made up of unchipped brush, small sticks, dirt or even trash.


It varies somewhat though you will receive between 4 to 15 yards of wood chips in 1 delivery.  That’s about 8 feet wide and 15 feet long.

While that may seem like a lot, they break down quite fast so we recommend a thick layer.  If you get more than you can use, you can always give some away to your neighbors.


You must sign up at the Chip Drop website.

You will not get a phone call prior to delivery so if you want or need a call before getting your wood chips, you shouldn’t use this service.

Guidelines to prepare for your chip drop

  • Make sure your dump spot is at least 8’ wide and 15’ long (truck needs room to maneuver).
  • Area must have height clearance up to 20’ so check for power lines or tree branches.
  • Keep in mind the load will spread out so move any potted plants or other items that could get buried.
  • Clearly mark the area where you want your load dropped with a tarp, cones or flags.
  • Include a secondary dump spot in your description in case the crew can’t drop them in the first location.
  • A narrow or busy road is NOT a good location as the load could spill out into the road.

Is there a charge for the wood chips?

No, about half of the people who use this service do not pay.  Payment is appreciated though it’s strictly voluntary.  You’ll be given an option to pay for a delivery with amounts ranging from $20 to $80.  Your payment will not be processed until after the chip delivery and if you don’t get a delivery, you’ll never be charged.

Keep in mind payment helps to offset the cost to the tree company for using the service.  It does NOT affect the quantity or quality of the wood chips though it may increase your chance of getting a delivery sooner.


You will not receive any logs in your wood chips but if you would like some, it may increase your chance of getting your wood chips sooner.  Keep in mind that the logs are not split and they may be quite large as you can’t specify the size of the logs you want.

You can also specify that you only want logs (no chips).  Again,logs will come in all sizes so be prepared to cut large ones down to a smaller size.

White growth on wood chips

When wood chips sit in a pile, it’s normal for them to start decomposing which results in mushroom mycelium growing on them.  It looks like a white or green mold and when you disturb the pile, there may be some dust that floats around so it’s a good idea to wear a dust mask when spreading the chips.


As soon as you sign up on the Chip Drop website, you could get your load as soon as that day.  Typically, delivery takes between 1 and 5 weeks though the wait is usually longer in the winter or if you live in a less populated area.

Remember, paying for a load can increase your chance of getting delivery sooner.  If you haven’t gotten your chips within 25 days of signing up, you will get an email reminder to see if you still want to be on the list.

Who can use the chip drop?

Gardeners and Arborists. Gardeners can sign up to receive a chip drop and arborists or tree companies, like General Tree Service, can sign up to drop off a load of chips to a specified site.

Please visit the Chip Drop website to sign up or to learn more information and see photos of the wood chips.

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