History of Yuba Blue/ Yuba Jade
Ralph Mullican, President of Yuba Blue Inc., has been in the landscape stone business since 1970. For over 43 years Ralph sold 3,000 to 5,000 tons of moss boulders yearly for landscaping to customers in the Sacramento Valley and San Francisco Bay Area, California, In 1988 a wealthy Atherton, California, millionaire (now billionaire) wanted the finest stone available for his 9 million dollar new home and cost was no object. After a lengthy search in several western states no stone was found that could match the beautiful boulders along the Yuba River, right at Ralph’s home in Smartville, California. However, the boulders were at the bottom o f a beautiful but deep canyon.
Ralph designed a special attachment for excavators for removing the stone without damage to the land or the stone. A road was built and trucks with low gearing were used to yard out the stone at the top of the mountain for reloading onto highway trucks. 800 tons were delivered in three weeks.
In 1992 two architects from San Francisco had benches cut from Yuba Blue. When the stone were opened no one could believe what was inside. The response by most who saw the insides said “could this be jade?”. Ralph was so impressed he made a commitment to learn about cutting, sculpting and polishing Yuba Blue.
The billionaire who built the 9 million dollar home is presently building a 50 million dollar home in Woodside, California, and Ralph is providing 1500 to 3000 tons of Yuba Blue.
Today Yuba Blue Inc. is exploring potential products and markets for this rare and beautiful stone.
Yuba Jade sculptures quite easily with high speed diamond. Ralph has sculptured a one- ton bison, 300 pound seal, 392 pound arrowhead, 68 pound frog, 130 pound frog, 1200 pound abstract, 50 pound bowl and numerous other small pieces. Ralph and his crew have made numerous free form table tops, fountains and objects of art from natural Yuba Blue boulders.
Nature has sculptured and polished Yuba Blue boulders to wonderful shapes. Many are too beautiful to alter. We have found that every stone is different in color and pattern. The density, texture and toughness is the same, however. It quite exciting to open a stone; you never know what to expect.
We have barely touched on what exists in our canyon.