Aesthetically, mulch makes a yard look tidy but knowing a few basic steps can lead to a quality installation.

Know How Much Mulch You Need

Measure your beds and figure out the square footage.  (length x width gives you square footage).  A new bed should have 2-3” of mulch. If you have mulched in previous years, you do not need to add 2-3” every year depending upon the decomposition rate.  Examples below are for a new bed and a 3” depth.

By the bag:

1 bag containing 2 cubic feet covers 8 square feet (2 ft. x 4 ft.)

By the yard:

1 cubic yard covers 108 square feet (9 ft. x 12 ft.)

By the truckload:

1 mini pickup holds 1 ½ yards and covers 162 square feet (9 ft. x 18 ft.)

1 full-sized pickup holds 2 ½ yards and covers 270 square feet (9 ft. x 30 ft.)

If you are buying bags containing 2 cubic feet of mulch, see example below:

100 sq. ft. of bed – You would need 13 bags for a depth of 3”

Over-Mulching Can Kill

Beware of an all too common practice – excessive loads of mulch around the base of trees. Don’t pile mulch up high on tree trunks.  The International Society of Arboriculture defines it as “mulch volcanoes”.   Long term covering up of trees can lead to root suffocation, dehydration, fungus and a perfect habitat for rodents who will feast on the inner bark which all lead to the overall decline and growth of the tree.  Mulching wide but not deep is a good practice.  Keep the root flare visible.


If you have specific questions or needs at your property, please contact us Whitehouse Landscaping at 484-300-4290.