2015 – I used 5 cubic yards of compost, Black Gold. When they dumped this, it covered an area 15 feet wide and 12 feet long. It was supposed to be screened to 3/8 inch, but I had some very large chunks in the mix.- I could have used at least 6 yards. I would wait until later in the year – say June 1 so that seedlings have time to emerge. I’d suggest going back to Black Forest Mulch in 2016. Note – October 19, 2015 – everything in the garden did VERY well and I did not fertilize anything in the garden.
This year (April 7 -2012) I decided to use a product called “Black Forest Mulch” to cover my many gardens.
It’s a mixture of finely ground wood mulch and “Black Gold” compost. It’s got a coffee grounds appearance, looks great and doesn’t smell as bad as some mulches. I bought it from St. Louis Composting.
This year I used 4.5 cubic yards of mulch and could have used five. (This equals 122 cu. feet.) Our small truck which we borrowed from a friend holds 1.5 cubic yards per load, so it took us three trips to get it all.
At $21/cu. yard the cost of the mulch with tax was $102.00 Note – it is now $22.00. If you compare that to buying it by the bag the savings are fantastic. At one garden center, 1.5 cu. ft sells for $5/bag. It would have taken me 80 bags to get all the mulch I needed at a cost of around $440 and 5 trips to the garden center. A standard full-size pickup will easily take two cu. yards or three yards if it is mounded up.I may consider having the mulch delivered to the house next year depending on the delivery cost. It costs $60 for delivery.
Before I put on my mulch , I spread out my charcoal and fertilizer mixture, so the mulch went over that.
The take-away is do your research and find out where your local composting service is in your area.
Mulch Option #2
If you find a sale, you can buy mulch at a reasonable price at some big-box stores. At a cost of $1/cu foot, it would cost $122 + taxes. This is what we tried in a new kids garden area.
At StLcompost.com, oak bark mulch cost $26/cu. yard. This would equal a cost of $117 plus taxes.
If you’re just looking for plain mulch the on sale mulch might work for you.
2013 – July 20 – 3 cu yards Black Forest Mulch.