Mulch shortage?!

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by Danscapes, Mar 15, 2011.

  1. Danscapes

    Danscapes LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 331

    Well today I purchased my first load of mulch for the season...........and was hit with an unpleasant surprise. Not only did the price of mulch go up $4 a yard, but the supplier told me I better buy it while I can because by the end of summer he expects not to have any! WTF?! I said he was crazy and then he explained that because of the economy that logging and land clearing has come to a stand still so therefore there will be a shortage in the near future. Have any of you guys heard of this "shortage"?:confused:
  2. I'd actually heard some at the end of last season, around here logging is down and there isn't any clearing for houses, so it wouldn't surprise me.
  3. P.Services

    P.Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,322

    Not a surprise, they were running low last year and predicted a shortage this spring. They don't just cut trees down for mulch, they have to have a bigger profitable reason to be out logging. No homes-No development- No mulch- price will skyrocket on what is avalible- look into stone.
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  4. Think Green

    Think Green LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,746

    It is according to regional sales and supply!!!!
    Certain mulches were in low demand here last season. We had plenty of cypress but not the pine and hardwood products. What we did have was of terrible quality and consistency. Seems like the suppliers were buying stuff from off the bottom of the barrel.
    The housing market is in low demand currently. Commercial properties are being built but with steel frames and not much wood.
    The real truth is.............there are these new state of the art machines that will grab a tree, cut it off at the bottom, peel the bark off and cut the trunk into boards right there in the woods. The stuff lays on the property for mother nature to reuse.
    Since this process is being utilized more readily now, it will seem glum for the future of the mulch industry. Remember, back some 20+ years ago, the time of huge building--the by products of trees became a big thing to use. They had to do something with these by products.............then came coloring the mulch.
    I don't think mulch will disappear--I think we will be forced to pay more for such a high demanding product. You know! When the demand is low the price falls and when the demand is high the price shoots to the moon.
  5. gunsnroses

    gunsnroses LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 266

    lots of pine is going to the power plants from some mills, in massive bulk. Here anyway
  6. LawnsRUsInc.

    LawnsRUsInc. LawnSite Senior Member
    from midwest
    Posts: 916

    Our tree care division brings us all of our trees crap pine and other soft woods we give away the rest we grind into shredded hardwood ourselves.
  7. Think Green

    Think Green LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,746

    I also failed to mention in my earlier post, that these big ticket giants like, Lowe's--Home Depot--Ace Hardware--K-Mart,etc. all have prepurchased the bagged mulch markets way ahead of time. The contracts are already sign, and delivered. All the mulch is going to the biggest seller from the mills. All the product in bulk is going to the biggest purchaser as well. Now the above post from me still applies.
  8. dandd75

    dandd75 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 45

    Perhaps this is good thing. Mulch in at least Ohio has been overused the last 15 years or so at least. Piles around the trunks of trees and allowing it to build up to half a foot...not good for plants. The U. Maryland did a study showing the negative impacts of over mulching a while back. Boxwoods seem very prone to this it was discovered.
    Maybe we will go back 40 years(or Europe...although I have seen more of it there the last few years) where mulch is not as common.

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