Bark Mulch FAQ’s

There is nothing like a fresh coating of bark mulch to announce that spring has finally arrived in New Hampshire. Whether you are ordering a bark mulch delivery from our material center or hiring our Mulch Hog to blow bark mulch into your beds, you probably have some questions about the mulch product you are buying.

Bark Mulch FAQ’s

The phone rings non-stop throughout the spring at the Groundhog Landscaping office. Many callers ask the same questions about bark mulch. Here are a few bark mulch FAQ’s that our dedicated office staff answers almost daily:

Is all bark mulch dyed?

Yes. Most mulch products are composed of ground wood pulp that is dyed red, black or brown. Even pure Hemlock mulch is color enhanced to keep the color from fading too soon.

Is bark mulch dye toxic?

The dye used in bark mulch is non-toxic. It is sourced from natural products like iron oxide (red) and charcoal (black). It is safe for children and pets, although dyed mulch may stain clothing and driveways. It’s a good idea to put down a large tarp before receiving your bark mulch delivery.

samples of dyed bark mulch

Does bark mulch attract carpenter ants?

No. Carpenter ants seek out damp, semi-solid wood to build their nests in. If you see ants in the bark mulch near your home, follow them to see if they go into the home. If so, it’s possible you have rotten wood in the sill or structure of the home.

Sometimes ants can be found in a bark mulch delivery because it is composed of ground up wood products which occasionally have rotten stumps or logs that have ant nests in them.

Is bark mulch expensive?

It depends on how you buy it. Bagged mulch products are the most expensive at about $60-$70 per yard. Bulk delivery of bark mulch is the most economical way to buy mulch. If you have a lot of beds, our bark blower can install a very thin layer of mulch, saving you on yardage as compared to moving it with a wheelbarrow and spreading it with a rake.

Groundhog employee blowing bark mulch in beds
Bark blowing is a cost-effective way to apply bark mulch to beds
Large bark blowing truck in Derry NH
The Mulch Hog at Groundhog Landscaping is VERY busy in spring!

How deep should I mulch my beds?

For effective weed control, you should maintain no more than a 3-inch layer of mulch in your planting beds. New planting beds would require a full 3 inches; however, if you mulch every year you only need to top-dress with an inch or so to replace what decomposed, washed away, or raked out.

How do I calculate how much mulch I need?

A cubic yard of mulch is 27 ft.³. It would cover a 9’ x 3’ area 1 foot deep. Of course, you’re not going to put down a foot of mulch! To calculate how much cubic yardage you need:

  1. Calculate Area. Multiply the length times the width of the beds that you want to cover
  2. Calculate Cubic Yardage. Divide the total area by 27. This gives you the total cubic yardage at 1′ deep.
  3. Calculate Mulch Depth. Multiply by the fraction of depth you want. For example, to cover the total area with mulch at a 3-inch depth, you would multiply that number by .25

Or you could simply use our handy mulch calculator

When can I expect my bark mulch delivery?

At Groundhog Landscaping, we try our best to get our deliveries out the following day. If you know how much you need and when you need it, however, it’s always good to call a week ahead and schedule.

Still have questions about bark mulch? Give our friendly office staff a call between 8 and 4 PM any day. They will be happy to answer your questions and take your order!

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