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View Full Version : 25 yards of mulch in 4 hours?


grassmasterswilson
04-02-2012, 07:44 AM
Ok guys. Got a customer who wants brown hardwood mulch. I have access to 3 extra guys but only part time. I could get them from 12-4 on wed and fridays. I've already got the job and I bid it to make money in my eyes. It will be a mulch installation and probably some small pruning. So my question is....

How long would it take 3 guys and maybe me to spread 25 yds of mulch? Lot size is under 1/2 acre, mulch would be delivered and dumped at the front of the lot, 2 wheel barrows moving it with 1 loading and maybe 1 spreading it out.

Thanks for the help. I'm trying to figure if I can do this in half a day or is it going to be a saturday job?

Tq23
04-02-2012, 08:27 AM
Depending on how easy the install is, i would estimate between 18-25 labor hours.

BlazerRidge
04-02-2012, 05:06 PM
I've got a job installing 20 CY in about a week and in the estimate I charged just the mulch install at 22 labor hours

grandview (2006)
04-02-2012, 05:12 PM
As fast as the guys humping the wheel barrels. The 4hrs are more then enough.

The Grounds Crew
04-02-2012, 05:44 PM
It all depends on how easily accesible the beds are and open the area is. But pruning alone could take 4 hours. Knowing the bid price can help figure the man hours it will take. If you share we can better help. But 4 hours is definitly not enough. (And is that 4 hours per man). I figure it takes roughly 1 man hour to spread one yard of mulch. So my best for you is 25 man hours plus how ever long it takes to prune.

grandview (2006)
04-02-2012, 05:48 PM
i think he is asking about the 4 hrs he has from 12-4 not so much man hrs.

RedSox4Life
04-02-2012, 05:48 PM
I've heard from multiple sources the "average" 1 guy and 1 wheelbarrel can spread is 1 yard per hour. So one yard per man hour.

But we average closer to double that usually, and sometimes more, using only wheelbarrels, pitchforks and rakes. What I do is have 2 guys with 10cu ft wheelbarrles constantly trucking the mulch to a third guy with an iron rake. Timing works out pretty well.

If a yard is 27cu ft, with the bigger wheelbarrels youre moving basically 1/3 yard per trip.

THEGOLDPRO
04-02-2012, 05:52 PM
I think you will be hard pressed to do 25 in 4 hours unless the beds are real easy to get to and your guys are working like rented mules.

grandview (2006)
04-02-2012, 05:56 PM
you'd be surprised how fast you can go.If you have 2 guys hauling and one guy spreading and not each doing their own work ,you can pop it off in no time. Really 1hr 1 yrd is a little slow to me.

grassmasterswilson
04-02-2012, 06:44 PM
Thanks guys. The beds are around the border of the property, around the house, and some tree rings. I'm thinking the majority of the job can be done my dumping the mulch and spreading it with a seed rack. The farthest bed would be about 75 feet from the dump site. Very flat lot. I have 1 big wheel barrow(the big ones with 2 front wheels) and the other is a good size one with one wheel.

Met with the customer about the pruning and there is very little of it. Some beds don't have any pruning.

I was thinking one guy loading wheel barrows, 2 guys pushing the wheel barrows to the site and the 4th guy spreading it out. I can have the guys from 12-4is so we are looking at 16-20 possible man hours.

I hate to leave mulch on a tarp in someone driveways overnight for fear of rain and staining.

jrs.landscaping
04-02-2012, 06:46 PM
RedSox4Life I've heard from multiple sources the "average" 1 guy and 1 wheelbarrel can spread is 1 yard per hour. So one yard per man hour.

But we average closer to double that usually, and sometimes more, using only wheelbarrels, pitchforks and rakes. What I do is have 2 guys with 10cu ft wheelbarrles constantly trucking the mulch to a third guy with an iron rake. Timing works out pretty well.

If a yard is 27cu ft, with the bigger wheelbarrels youre moving basically 1/3 yard per trip.

I agree, we usually figure one man hour per yard of mulch. It can be done faster but it depends on if the guy spreading can use a rake or has to hand spread around a lot of plants, junipers are the ones that are most time consuming for us. You should be able to do it. Just make sure your beds are prepped and all your bushes are trimmed back before your help arrives so they can hump as much product as they can while you have there help.

RedSox4Life
04-02-2012, 07:28 PM
[QUOTE=grassmasterswilson;4369664]

I was thinking one guy loading wheel barrows, 2 guys pushing the wheel barrows to the site and the 4th guy spreading it out.

QUOTE]

Its pointless to have one guy dedicated to loading wheelbarrels. It takes 30 seconds to load a wheelbarrel.

grandview (2006)
04-02-2012, 07:37 PM
[QUOTE=grassmasterswilson;4369664]

I was thinking one guy loading wheel barrows, 2 guys pushing the wheel barrows to the site and the 4th guy spreading it out.

QUOTE]

Its pointless to have one guy dedicated to loading wheelbarrels. It takes 30 seconds to load a wheelbarrel.

All you need are a couple extra ones and have him keep loading,then switch off with another guy. 1 guy loading 2 guys pushing 1 guy spreading.

Kelly's Landscaping
04-02-2012, 07:44 PM
Depends allot of the on the beds too if they require getting on your hands and knees to work this under tons of bushes and plants. Then have 2 spread 1 load and 1 just running barrels changing the empty one for the full one over and over. Some times were do 2 guys spreading and have the 2 guys running fill their own barrels.

Also you got the bed prep work weeding and edging and a pre emergent if your putting one down. No 3 guys are doing this in 4 hours so you mentioned they can be there for you at 12 so go there first thing in the morning and prep the job yourself. Then when they get in have them hit the pile if it were me id be spreading on running. The spreading gives me quality control while running allows me to set the pace. Then when they have to leave finish the job up your self I don't think your move 25 yards in 4 hours with 4 guys but you can sure get close.

Duekster
04-02-2012, 07:57 PM
4 guys for 4 hours is 16 man hours. Sounds like 1 hour per yard is pretty close for estimates to me. It is just good to be able to rotate people out.

Greenery
04-02-2012, 09:46 PM
When taking advice from random people like this one thing to consider is what their quality may be like.

I've seen some pretty bad mulch installs, basically it looks like they dump a wheelbarrow full kick it around a little and call it good. Then there will be mulch on and over the edging, on top of boulders, retaining walls, in the grass, etc.

Then you have the guys who make it look nice by spreading by hand or if they are good, with a rake. They spread it at an even depth, have crisp lines behind the edging, no mulch where it shouldn't be, NO VOLCANOES. (I saw some sweet tree volcanoes just today, nice and fresh)

So I guess what i'm saying is some will spread 25 yards in 8 man hours while others will take closer to 20 hours, given the same location.


I personally like the 1 hour per yard.

grandview (2006)
04-02-2012, 09:49 PM
All on the hands and knees here. Have a lot of volcanoes to. Trid knocking down the mulch but through the years the roots grew into the mulch so you could only keep covering it up.

Greenery
04-03-2012, 02:52 AM
Looks good grandview.


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BlazerRidge
04-03-2012, 12:51 PM
Thats a good looking install grandview. Clean and simple.

KeystoneLawn&Landscaping
04-03-2012, 05:04 PM
I agree with Greenery. I take 1-1.25 yards per hour average. All is neat, clean, even along foundations, neatly under shrubs, and consistant depth. I saw a job yesterday that looked like a dump and kick job, looked like crap! Quality takes time. Thats just me.

Duekster
04-03-2012, 07:58 PM
Sounds like 1 hour per yard is close and some might go higher depending on the beds!

grassmasterswilson
04-04-2012, 07:59 AM
Well I'll let you guys know today! Hoping the rain will hold off. I'm going to get the pruning and prep work done. Hopefully my guys can get started around 12 and sling some mulch!

Greenery
04-06-2012, 11:46 PM
So how did it go?
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phillie
04-07-2012, 12:20 AM
Did you get it done in the 4 hr allotment?

THEGOLDPRO
04-07-2012, 12:29 AM
Did you get it done in the 4 hr allotment?
They are still doing it. going on day 3

phillie
04-07-2012, 12:39 AM
They are still doing it. going on day 3

Haha, that sucks!

FoghornLeghorn
04-07-2012, 12:45 AM
We did 22.5 yards in 2.5 hours today. 3 guys working, plus me kinda working/trimming trees.

phillie
04-07-2012, 01:44 AM
We did 22.5 yards in 2.5 hours today. 3 guys working, plus me kinda working/trimming trees.

How'd you pull that one off? 10 yrds an hr is pretty much impossible. Even if all three guys drove a truck hauling a bark blower to the site, I dont see it happening. What was your method?

grandview (2006)
04-07-2012, 05:54 AM
I must be missing something,I bang out anywhere from 5-10 yrds by myself all the time.And I sure don't make them all day jobs either.

FoghornLeghorn
04-07-2012, 09:43 AM
How'd you pull that one off? 10 yrds an hr is pretty much impossible. Even if all three guys drove a truck hauling a bark blower to the site, I dont see it happening. What was your method?

300 bags of mulch does NOT take long to put down.

You have all guys haul bags at one time and place them, once
they're all in place, you have 2 guys open and dump bags and while the other guy spreads with a rake. The other 2 guys cleanup bags by stuffing them into single open bags (can get 15-20 discarded bags in a bag.

Once all bags are cleaned up, you have the other 2 guys help spread mulch with rakes. WOP BAM BOOM, you're done in no time...
Posted via Mobile Device

grassmasterswilson
04-07-2012, 10:05 AM
The update..... I ordered 24 "scoops" and we were short so I had to go get 4 more "yards" and had too much. We had to find places for it. So i'm thinking the 24 wasn't full yards and the 4 was very big yards.

So it took us 4.75 hours from start to cleanup. 2 guys spreading and 2 guys pushing and filling up wheel barrows. Looked real nice. Probably would have been faster with 3 wheel barrows and 1 spreading. We could switch out places.

Duekster
04-07-2012, 12:38 PM
This is why you should express in terms of man hours. I did this in an Hour but I had 3 other guys.

I do not care if it takes 2 guys all day or 4 guys a 1/2 day or 8 guys two hours !!! It is still 16 man hours those are terms people in the construction and service industry use to describe production rates.

mow4cash
04-07-2012, 07:56 PM
The day it takes an hour to spread a yard of mulch. I'd ask them if they had to use a 5gal. You would have to put down a bucket every min and you would have it done in under an hour.