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`Compare = ( "Bulk" )/( 1 ) vs ( Bag )/( 2 )`

Enter a value for all fields

The **Bulk verses Bags Price Comparison** calculator compares the cost of a bulk product verses a product in bags given their price, delivery costs and volume.

**INSTRUCTIONS:** Choose units and enter the following:

- (
**Bulk**) Price of Bulk Mulch - (
**BulkV)**Bulk Volume (e.g. 1 cubic yard) - (
**Bag**) Price of One Bag - (
**BagV**) Volume of Mulch in a Bag. (e.g. 2 cubic feet)

**Bulk vs Bag Price Comparison**: The calculator will indicate which is the better buy and by what percentage.

The calculator makes the currency and unit conversions and identifies which item is less expensive and by what percentage. This calculator is intended to help you save money by comparing the price/volume of items to determine which is the better buy. Note: the default value for bag size is 2 cubic feet, the most common volume found in the large box stores.

**Mulch to Cover Area**: Enter an area size (e.g. 45 square feet or 0.75 acres) and depth of mulch wanted, and see estimated amount of mulch needed.**Mulch to Cover Circular Area**: Enter the diameter (D) of the circle and depth of mulch wanted, and see estimated amount of mulch needed.**Mulch to Cover Rectangular Area**: Enter the length (L) and width (W) of the area and depth of mulch wanted, and see estimated amount of mulch needed.**Mulch to Cover Irregular Area**: Enter the length of the four sides (a,b,c,d) and the diagonal (D) of an irregular area (see diagram) and the depth of mulch wanted, and see estimated amount of mulch needed.**Mulch Cost Estimate**: Enter the amount of mulch needed, choose a type of mulch and it will provide an estimate of the cost.**Mulching With Straw (Irregular Area)**: Enter the length (L) and width (W) of the rectangular area and it will estimate the number of bales of straw needed to mulch the area with straw.**Mulching With Straw (Area):**Enter the area (acres, square feet) to see an estimate of the number of bales of straw needed to mulch the area with straw.**Bulk vs Bag Price Comparison:**Enter the bulk mulch and bag prices and volumes, and it tells you which is cheaper and by how much.**Landscape Fabric**: Computes the amount of landscape fabric needed for an area.

Mulching is an excellent way to help your garden, plants, shrubs or trees in your yard. Mulch slows the growth of weeds, while allowing water and air to get to your plants; it also provides a pleasing visual boundary to highlight your plants.

To help you know how much mulch you need for a job, the vCalc mulch calculator helps calculate the volume of mulch needed. The volume equations, **mulch cover (area)**, **mulch cover (circular)** and **mulch cover (rectangle)** both use the dimensions of the area to be covered and the desired depth of mulch in order to calculate the volume. The volume is returned in cubic units (system units such as cubic feet) or in standard bags. Bags of mulch in the U.S. typically come in units of 2 cubic feet. Note: most experts recommend a depth(d) of 1" to 2" of fine mulch or 3" to 4" of coarse mulch.

The **mulch cost** equation allows you to enter the cubic measurement (ft^{3} or m^{3}) and then lets you enter the unit price for a cubic foot of mulch. vCalc uses the volume and unit price to compute the total cost. Local pricing should always be used. However, for the convenience of the user, a periodic Internet survey is made of mulch prices. The most recent observations are as follows:

**Date:**12/27/21**Store:**Lowes**Red Mulch:**1.84 USD/ft³**Pine Mulch:**2.44 USD/ft³**Common Hardwood Mulch:**1.84 USD/ft³**Cedar Mulch:**1.83 USD/ft³**Rubber Mulch:**8.725 USD/ft³

**Bags of Mulch:** For most people, you’re going to get bags of mulch at the garden center and put them in your trunk or the back of your SUV or mini-van. This works well and can be high quality, but it’s also the most expensive source of mulch. As recently as 12/27/21, the price of a cubic foot of pine mulch was surveyed on the website of Lowes at $2.44 USD/ft³. If you go to Lowe's or Home Depots most of their mulch comes in 2 cubic feet bags.

**Bulk Mulch:** If you have a truck or can borrow one, you have another option, bulk mulch. Bulk mulch is often cheaper. We are currently getting bulk mulch for $35 per cubic yard. That’s $1.29 per cubic foot (vs the number above) and is comparable to $2.58 for a 2 cubic foot bag.

Nonetheless, Lowe's, at the time of this writing (5.2.2018), has a sale of 5 bags of mulch for $10.

For more information, see the Mulch to Block Weeds blog.