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mgoblue
10-26-2011, 08:24 AM
Wanted to share a success (profit) story from this year. Was tired of the all the employee issues and equipment breakdowns. Decided to try putting a couple guys on mulch re-coloring. Landed one project that was nearly 200,000 sqft and the colorant (Hippie Mulch) cost was around $0.01 per sqft. Was my most profitable single job ever! We did some promotion of it this year, but going to use the winter to really push this. The colorant seemed to last the whole season and I really liked how simple the whole process was.

DIXIECONTRACTING
10-26-2011, 09:20 AM
Can you elaborate more on your process, equipment, material cost and supplier etc.

mgoblue
10-26-2011, 09:52 AM
Here is a link to manufacturer instructions http://hippymulch.com/howtosprayhippiemulch.html, but what we found that worked great was a battery powered 5 gallon backpack sprayer. Solo has one that runs about $350 and worked fantastic. We also had another sprayer filled with water, one employee wet the rocks, and edging prior to our spraying, then came back after spraying the color and washed down any color that got on those items.

The material cost was about a penny per sqft and we had a crew of three there for only two days to complete the job. We use $30 per man hour to figure our labor so we had less than $2,000 in labor and $2,000 in material cost (you can buy Hippy Mulch online at their website). We charged $10,000, and were the only company that bid a recoloring, were told that everyone else was bidding double our price so they decided to try us.

We also bought a couple $30 hand garden tillers to roll the mulch. We sprayed everything once, tilled the mulch, and re-sprayed.

DIXIECONTRACTING
10-26-2011, 10:59 AM
Interesting please let us know how well the color holds up especially in the sun

StihlMechanic
10-26-2011, 06:41 PM
Is hippie mulch your company?

Dr.NewEarth
10-26-2011, 10:11 PM
Funny. That was brought up elsewhere today.

Andy31
10-26-2011, 10:31 PM
Any pics? 200,000sq'

knox gsl
10-26-2011, 10:38 PM
I did this recently on a property with some mulch dye I got from JDL went on easy and fast. I did rake the beds between coats. There were only 2 downfalls, clogged my sprayer and had brown mulch dye all over me.

dutchacres
10-26-2011, 11:47 PM
I have done this process twice with mixed results. I am thinking I may pitch this idea to an apartment complex this week to save them some money and maybe get me in the door for the rest of the maintenance.

Darryl G
10-27-2011, 12:08 AM
Wow, Man! You know, like I have a VW van I could paint some flowers on go around doing this.

But really, interesting idea and thanks for sharing. There are times when customers are just wanting fresh color and just turning the mulch doesn't bring it "back to life" enough.

I really do have a VW van though, lol.

GravelyWoman
10-27-2011, 06:59 AM
Here is a link to manufacturer instructions http://hippymulch.com/howtosprayhippiemulch.html, but what we found that worked great was a battery powered 5 gallon backpack sprayer. Solo has one that runs about $350 and worked fantastic. We also had another sprayer filled with water, one employee wet the rocks, and edging prior to our spraying, then came back after spraying the color and washed down any color that got on those items.

The material cost was about a penny per sqft and we had a crew of three there for only two days to complete the job. We use $30 per man hour to figure our labor so we had less than $2,000 in labor and $2,000 in material cost (you can buy Hippy Mulch online at their website). We charged $10,000, and were the only company that bid a recoloring, were told that everyone else was bidding double our price so they decided to try us.

We also bought a couple $30 hand garden tillers to roll the mulch. We sprayed everything once, tilled the mulch, and re-sprayed.

I am sorry, I did not see the answer to the question about, "Is this your company?"
Thanks-
GW

mgoblue
10-27-2011, 07:09 AM
Not my company, just sharing what I used. Two days work for 3 guys with $5,000 profit and the customer was happy with the money they saved. They now reality is they will probably use new mulch every 2nd to 3rd year, but if they can cut the mulch budget in half every other year it is a nice win.

The color held up well over the summer, and as a reminder we double sprayed by spraying once, tilling, then re-spraying.

GreenGiant94
10-31-2011, 10:08 PM
Thanks for sharing. This might be a dumb question. Is there any type of chemical in the dye that requires you to have a license to be able to put it down? Thanks

mgoblue
11-01-2011, 10:06 AM
Called the manufacturer to pose this question to them this morning. Here is a summary of their answer to me. In summary the answer is that it does not contain anything that would require special licensing.

Colored mulch is synthetic pigment used in numerous industries (construction, plastics, pharmaceuticals) that is combined with a polymer binder that helps it stick versus pure water that would help disperse the color but not make it bind.

karlgrooms
11-01-2011, 10:57 AM
Well... I am curious but kind of concerned about the synthetic and polymer portions. I wonder if continued use would eventually lead to soil problems, or seal off the mulch so that you have chunks of mulch that never break down or not let water etc. in. The site made no mentions of benefits of use. I would like to try but i have a tendency to over think things.

mgoblue
11-01-2011, 02:52 PM
First I can tell you from my experience it doesn't seal off the surface, or seal off the mulch. The mulch does still break down over time. I still expect every couple years to have to place new mulch, but this might work as an every other year cost savings for the customer, and increased profit (less competition) item for me.

Made another call to the manufacturer and learned more than I ever want to know about mulch color. In addition to construction, this is the same base pigment used in cosmetics (including lipstick), pills, and coloring plastics. The polymer is basically glue, that makes it adhere to the mulch instead of just running through into the ground. The product is a modified version of the same stuff they sell to the big mulch processors that color the mulch we already buy.

You got me thinking about this so I also went out and found this on a couple of cosmetic sites which I think we can translate into our industry for safe usage. "The FDA also includes Iron Oxides on its list of indirect food additives considered Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS)." The questions here have helped me get further educated, hope this settles your concerns.

GreenGiant94
11-01-2011, 07:26 PM
Thanks for looking into all that for us! I found a different company and i like their website better. Its Earthshades. Have you looked at this company at all. What made you choose hippy?

mgoblue
11-02-2011, 06:52 AM
I had tried Earth Shades and Mulch Renu before settling on Hippy Mulch. The Hippy Mulch seems to have a much better binder and not just run through the material (less waste). When we install, we spray once, use a hand tiller to roll and turn the mulch, and spray a final time. The price for all of them is just a couple cents per square foot so material cost is really not the top issue for me. Finally their color card and names make my customers laugh which helps sell the process easier.

Atlantic Lawn
11-17-2011, 07:39 PM
We've tried coloring mulch before. It works, but the problems begin when you need to re-enter the beds to hand weed or spray. The places where you step or disturb the newly colored mulch now have a very different color. Can become a real problem,especially if you have traffic in the beds. Good Luck.

DIXIECONTRACTING
11-18-2011, 06:10 AM
We've tried coloring mulch before. It works, but the problems begin when you need to re-enter the beds to hand weed or spray. The places where you step or disturb the newly colored mulch now have a very different color. Can become a real problem,especially if you have traffic in the beds. Good Luck.

Along those lines if you spray a chemical application such as round up will that have any affect on the coloring ?

BaxtersEssentialLawnCare
11-21-2011, 05:00 PM
Does this work on pinestraw? Its real big here, atleast 50% of the mulch here is pinestraw. I saw a color that was close has anyone tried to dye pinestraw? I saw a color that looked pretty close.

ACMiller
12-28-2011, 12:36 PM
We have been doing this for 6 years now we are using the Mobile Mulch Systems program and colorants its a little more one step, colors and moves the mulch, (no going back over it) the Landmark colorants they provide have better binders for the re-coloring process our customers are happy and my bank is happy. we have done over a million sq.ft a year the last 4 years. Along with installing 1500 to 2000 yards of mulch.

ez landscape
02-16-2012, 12:06 PM
I have used many of the spray coloring mulch dye companys and found one to be really good also. They have benn around for two years and have a highly concentrated product. there web site is www.newmulchinabottle.com there customer service and pricing was awsome.

ez landscape
02-16-2012, 12:09 PM
I have used the New Mulch In A Bottle on pinestraw mulch and the New Mulch In A Bottle on dead grass works awsome

vaacutabove
02-18-2012, 02:10 PM
Anyone ever find out what round up does to this. How long did it take to spray till and respray say 1kanything just for pricing in my head
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clayslandscape
06-06-2012, 10:17 PM
Did you by chance get to purchase hippie mulch at wholesale price? The price listed on the site is high!