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View Full Version : Mulch buying in bulk by bags


tjg
03-22-2000, 12:22 AM
Would like to know if anyone can give my numbers etc. for me to buy mulch and topsoil in bags I use Eucalyptus mulch and like it better than Cypress that is what everyone is still using.<p>----------<br>T.J. Greenfield<br>

Alan
03-29-2000, 09:51 AM
If you're looking for someone to provide numbers for you you really should do your own legwork. Check with your suppliers and do some figuring. No matter what you use, the price will vary by location. Around here (northern Vermont) bagged, dyed cedar is very close to the same price as bulk dyed cedar, unless you can buy in trailer load quantities, about 80 yds per hit that way. I found that buying in pallet lots I could get the material for the same price, or so close to it to be irrelevant. And the convenience was worth the small price difference. Bags were 3 cu. ft., I allowed one extra bag per yd in my calculations, 10 per yd instead of the &quot;ideal&quot; of 9. For small jobs I could toss whatever number of bags I figured in the truck and if there was any left it was real easy to put it back in stock. In addition, I could go on the job with a pickup, unload my bagged material, load the old mulch in the truck and not have to worry about having loose material left over. There is more to it than just a question of bagged versus bulk, even if you are set up to handle bulk material efficiently.

steveair
03-29-2000, 11:14 AM
The previous is right about doing your own leg work. I don't think anyone around here even sells eucalytous, so I would have no idea of the price. Normal pricing for the bagged mulch is around 3 bags/ for 10 bucks less a 15% dicount. Never really saw too many great discounts on the bagged myself, even with large bulk orders. I'm sure someone out there gets a good deal, but I've never seen the numbers.<p>As for the top, I would go with bulk. Bagged top is way more expensive and does not seem like much of a convenience. It seems like those bags break as soon as you put them in your truck. Its hard to get someplaces to load a small compact truck with top if thats what you have, but they'll do it. I can't imagine too many jobs anyway that would only require a couple of bags, besides small reseeding situation. With any kind of bed prep or lawn renovation, a yard is usually the min. needed.<p>steveair<br>

Lanelle
03-29-2000, 04:38 PM
The economics of bag vs. bulk is more complex than just the initial price. There are several huge commercial maintenance companies in our area that will have an entire tractor trailer load of bags delivered to a site and then send the men to spread it. This cuts down on equipment and handling needs. They must get a very competitive price to start with so that the labor savings makes it an attractive route to go. And if the bags are breaking easily, get a different supplier. <br>Our company uses bulk, double-shredded hardwood mulch. That's what we're set up to handle. The volume bought does affect the price.<p>----------<br>Lanelle<br>

steveair
03-29-2000, 06:16 PM
Hello again,<p>The subject of bagged vs. bulk mulch is a interesting topic. With the price of the bagged being quite higher than bulk, its hard to see the economics of it sometimes, but there are some instances where it does work for the better.<p>Also, I think it has a lot to do with personal preferences also. I remember reading a article about a man that did nothing but grow and then install shade trees<br>along roads and developments. He had a perfect system for digging, planting, and mulching each tree, so that there was zero mess when finished. One thing he did was used bagged mulch. I remember it saying it cost more, but it made the whole operation run smoother to him. They painted X'x on the ground where the trees went, then had a truck come along and drop a tree off, then had another truck drop two bags of mulch off, then planted the tree. When planting the tree, they had a backhoe and a second front loader there, so that they scooped the dirt and put it in the bucket rather than on the ground (a lot of sites had existing grass) When the tree was in, they edged the hole quick, back filled from the bucket, and then mulched using the bags. Really a efficient system. <p>For some things, cost is not the only issue.<br>

sunrise
03-29-2000, 06:38 PM
Lanelle, Where in NoVa. are you at.<br>My self in Woodbridge<br>We buy in bag form its less mess to clean up and when your doing islands in the middle of road less chance truck getting hit

steven Bousquet
03-29-2000, 07:09 PM
if your doing alot of mulch spray it in, this looks to be the wave of the future.8-15 yds per hr. with the smaller unit.

Lanelle
03-29-2000, 08:33 PM
Sunrise,<br>I'm located in Fairfax, where my husband has a small residential grounds maintenance company. And I do landscape design for a larger company that does both commercial maintenance and residential/commercial landscape contracting. Did you see that both STM and Scapes have been bought out?<br>Lancaster is the company that I noticed using a huge amount of bagged mulch last week. And I've seen some of the others doing it too. The blown in mulch looks ok for some areas but sometimes it looks too powdery and flat. There is often no crowned edge, either. Yes, it is very fast and is probably a good solution to mulching a woodland garden where a more natural, low-key appearance is welcome.<p>----------<br>Lanelle<br>

sunrise
03-30-2000, 07:33 PM
Lanelle I agree the mulch blower I have seen or saw being used made it look good until it rained then it would move.<br>I did sub work for Rupert until it was take by Green Machine. But they still sub out to me on some things,Who knows I may be next

steven Bousquet
03-30-2000, 07:40 PM
the mulch blower is only as good as the applicator, yes it is used to lightly top dress with 1&quot; ans sometimes the rain can move it, but after youhave bess mulching the same beds for years how much new mulch do you need? for new installs you just blow 3-4&quot; in the bed, you can get the crown edge using a board sheild. I really think this is the way of the future.

paddy
04-01-2000, 05:45 PM
i'm interested in those machines. how much do they cost, i think on finn's site used ones were 100k, i might be wrong. do they have their own hoppers? if not how does the mulch get from the truck to the blower. i assume that you need at least a medium duty truck for it to be profitable.

steven Bousquet
04-01-2000, 08:40 PM
the small trailer blower is around 32k,then you go up from that, you need to carry 8-10yds to make it worth it. need to be doing 1,000 yds or more per year.