How do y’all get mulch so cheap!?

Cross Creek Lawn Care

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Middle Tennessee
So most of y’all know I’m a teenager and I operate a lawn care business in my neighborhood, this will be my second year. Last year I charged $70 a yard for high end pine bark mini nuggets. I was able to get pine bark mini nuggets, bagged and delivered on pallets for only $39 (including tax) a yard. That’s less than I could’ve gotten the cheap stuff for at any of the like 5 landscape supply stores I called. So here is what I’m wondering.... how are y’all getting mulch for like $15-20 a yard? Of course I don’t have a truck and the towing vehicle we’ve got is a 1500 suburban so we need it delivered. Do y’all have any guidance on how to get mulch for less than $30 delivered including tax for good quality. Anything more than $30 and the convenience of the bags is worth it. I just need to get my margins up!
 

DLL LLC

LawnSite Member
Location
Pennsylvania
You just have to build a good relationship with a supplier. Some suppliers wont give you a break unless you have a history of buying a lot. You could try talking with them and say "Hey, id luv to be able to give you more business, is there any chance of getting a discount" Never hurts to ask. It also depends on your area. Certain areas of the country $50 a yard is cheap. Here in the Northeast PA we can get cheap pallet shredded mulch for $11 a yard and good hardwood for about $14 a yard. Good luck and try building up your vendor relationships
 
OP
C

Cross Creek Lawn Care

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Middle Tennessee
You just have to build a good relationship with a supplier. Some suppliers wont give you a break unless you have a history of buying a lot. You could try talking with them and say "Hey, id luv to be able to give you more business, is there any chance of getting a discount" Never hurts to ask. It also depends on your area. Certain areas of the country $50 a yard is cheap. Here in the Northeast PA we can get cheap pallet shredded mulch for $11 a yard and good hardwood for about $14 a yard. Good luck and try building up your vendor relationships
So I should be going to the suppliers of the landscape supply lots or should I talk to the supply lots themselves? I will hopefully be ordering 1 load of 75 yards, Is that enough quantity to get a deal?
 

DLL LLC

LawnSite Member
Location
Pennsylvania
So I should be going to the suppliers of the landscape supply lots or should I talk to the supply lots themselves? I will hopefully be ordering 1 load of 75 yards, Is that enough quantity to get a deal?
Try to cut out any middle man. We get all our mulch right from suppliers that make it. Its the only way you will really get decent pricing. We are fortunate enough to run 2 of our own dump trucks, so delivery isnt an issue. Occassionaly we have the one supplier deliver, but usually thats if we need 25 yards or more at one site. As for if 75 yards is enough for a discount, thats going to be hard to say. Maybe a few dollars a yard. We average about 75 yards a week from April thru June, so our two suppliers know that and we always get their lowest rate. A buddy of mine does almost double that and we get charged the same.
 

JLSLLC

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
The Garden State
Some have higher/lower operating costs than others.
The place I use has tons of wood for material, price is lower than most. Other suppliers buy their product to re sell.
 

TPendagast

LawnSite Fanatic
So most of y’all know I’m a teenager and I operate a lawn care business in my neighborhood, this will be my second year. Last year I charged $70 a yard for high end pine bark mini nuggets. I was able to get pine bark mini nuggets, bagged and delivered on pallets for only $39 (including tax) a yard. That’s less than I could’ve gotten the cheap stuff for at any of the like 5 landscape supply stores I called. So here is what I’m wondering.... how are y’all getting mulch for like $15-20 a yard? Of course I don’t have a truck and the towing vehicle we’ve got is a 1500 suburban so we need it delivered. Do y’all have any guidance on how to get mulch for less than $30 delivered including tax for good quality. Anything more than $30 and the convenience of the bags is worth it. I just need to get my margins up!
The answer is I have a big truck that will hold 15 cubic yards of mulch

I burn through mulch so fast it makes the supplier wonder if I just make round trips to the city dunp with it,
You pull in with your PIA little rig that barely pulls 3 yards, take up space and time and it’s barely worth them selling to you in the first place to the point they kinda wished you didn’t come around at all.
That’s the difference

you can get the feeling when you show up about how the yard people treat you when you’re there.
If you got that feeling, you’re definitely not getting their best price bracket.

I get that crap from the gravel pit if I send my medium duty trucks over there.... they crap all over my drivers I have to remind them occasionally that I buy more concrete blocks from them than anyone in the state, so maybe it’s not a good idea to treat my people like that.
But the kid with the suburban?
Yea.... you’re getting the “omg him again?” Pricing
 
OP
C

Cross Creek Lawn Care

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Middle Tennessee
The answer is I have a big truck that will hold 15 cubic yards of mulch

I burn through mulch so fast it makes the supplier wonder if I just make round trips to the city dunp with it,
You pull in with your PIA little rig that barely pulls 3 yards, take up space and time and it’s barely worth them selling to you in the first place to the point they kinda wished you didn’t come around at all.
That’s the difference

you can get the feeling when you show up about how the yard people treat you when you’re there.
If you got that feeling, you’re definitely not getting their best price bracket.

I get that crap from the gravel pit if I send my medium duty trucks over there.... they crap all over my drivers I have to remind them occasionally that I buy more concrete blocks from them than anyone in the state, so maybe it’s not a good idea to treat my people like that.
But the kid with the suburban?
Yea.... you’re getting the “omg him again?” Pricing
That makes a lot of sense.
 


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