Question on this mulch bid

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by JustinPowell22, Jan 27, 2006.

  1. JustinPowell22

    JustinPowell22 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 20

    I measured out 16,000 sq ft for a restaurant that needs mulching. I came up with 90 cu yds. Tell me if this is correct for that much sq ft. The price I came up with was

    90yd x $65 per yd = $5,850 total

    how i got cu yd estimate.

    16,000 sq ft x .16 then divide that by 27 = 95 but im figuring i should only get about 80-85 since theres alot of shrubs and landscaping in the beds.
  2. RSK2

    RSK2 LawnSite Member
    from PA
    Posts: 102

  3. CutApproved

    CutApproved LawnSite Member
    from NJ
    Posts: 234

    Use my formula,, works very well.

    Length x Width x Inches(how thick you want it)
    20' x 20' x 6" = 2400
    2400/10 = 240
    240/27= 8.9 cubic yards

    this allows for a 20% compaction cushion. JUST ADJUST YOUR NUMBERS INTO THE ABOVE
  4. CutApproved

    CutApproved LawnSite Member
    from NJ
    Posts: 234

    Try using

    Length x Width x Inches (How thick you want it)

    Take that number divide by 10 then take that number and divide by 27
    This give you your cubic yards allowing for a 20% compaction cushion

    15' x 25' x 4" = 1500
    150/27= 5.5 cubic yards
  5. paponte

    paponte LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,366

    We always figure on 3" of mulch for depth. A quick rule of thumb that we use in the field is sqft./100 = yds needed. It's not an exact number, and should put you just a little over what is needed to cover yourself. :)
  6. gammon landscaping

    gammon landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 550

    i would agree with paponte, that is how i estamate mulch so 16,000 sqf you would need a least 160 yards i would eastamate 175 just to give you a buffer
    and 175 x 65 = 11375

    big differance
  7. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,923

    I don't put down much mulch, but did a job last Saturday -- small, only four cu yds. Since I don't do much, my "eye" does not gain much experience for making future estimates.

    But, I always make a good estimate beforehand of area and some "coverage ratio." For me, that term means the density of beds, either few plantings (near 1.00), or densely planted (maybe as low as 0.50). When I'm done with the job, and know how much material I really needed, I back calculate the depth of mulch just spread.

    Initially, I estimate 1.5" depth. Afterwards, I know more precisely how deep I really spread the material. If it is a job that only needed a freshening up, the depth is a small number; if the soil is bare or nearly bare, the depth is a larger number.

    Gaining some backlog of jobs done is a big help to making estimates for future jobs. Frankly, I'm surprised how well the estimates usually are fulfilled when the project is done.

    For me, on these small jobs (e.g. 4 cu yds), I make a double check with "wheelbarrow loads." I have a 6 cu ft wb, with a homemade extension. I know that a 3 cu yd trailer load will yield 13 wheelbarrow loads. The supply yard that loads my trailer has a 3 cu yd bucket on the loader, so each load is very close to the last one. When spreading, I can see how much cover one wb load allows. For the next job, I can visually look how each wb load will be used. So marking off each wb load will give me a total number of wb loads, and I can back-calculate how many cu yds of material will be required. I work myself, work systematically across the areas to be covered, so I can follow the progress, load by load. I'm not a "dump-n-spead" worker, rather a "forker." Most of my jobs have many plantings, so the forking strategy works best for me. I can control the coverage much better.

    Obviously, my approach is unreasonable for 16K sq ft jobs.
  8. rudy2

    rudy2 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    The formula I use is very simple and is usually right on target.
    Divide 16,000 by 3 to get your sq yards, then devide that by 80.
    I come up with 66.666 cubic yards, then round up to 67.
  9. TScapes

    TScapes LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 453

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  10. B&D Lawn Care

    B&D Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 342

    OK 3 differnet guys, 2 different ways. the yare way off of each other. One has 175 yds on 16000 sq. ft the other has only 67 yds. WTF??????
    Maybe it's because the 3rd guy didn't go w' depth and where did he get 80 from?


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