How Much Does Mulch Weigh? And More!

Rusty wheelbarrow full of wood chip mulch.

Mulch comes in different types and can be used in gardens, playgrounds, and parks. For any DIY mulch project, it’s important to know how much mulch will be required before you begin.

How Much Does a Bag of Mulch Weigh?

There are many types of mulch and some variations in weight based on its composition, but a typical bag of wood mulch measures two cubic feet and weighs approximately 20 pounds.

What Are the Different Uses of Mulch?

Mulch can serve several important purposes in a garden or in a playground. Here are some of the most significant benefits of using mulch according to experts.

#1: It Provides Nutrients to Soil and Plants

The nutrients in soil help plants to grow. Garden mulch is typically composed of organic material, such as wood chips and landscaping fabric. The right mulch can improve the quality of sandy soil, providing necessary nutrients for your plants.

#2: It Regulates the Temperature of Soil

In the summer, when temperatures soar, it’s easy for soil to overheat and dry out. Mulch keeps the soil cool and hydrated, which helps plants to grow and improves their root structure.

Mulch has a similar benefit in the winter, when it can shield your plants’ roots from cold, ensuring they’ll grow again in the spring.

#3: It Can Help to Control Pests

Some forms of mulch have a strong scent that can help to keep animals and insects away from your garden. For example, some mulch contains cedar chips. It’s essential to understand the pest-controlling properties of any mulch before you use it.

#4: It Can Cushion a Fall

In a playground, mulch provides a barrier between children and the hard ground. Many playgrounds use mulch made from rubber, which absorbs impact and can help to prevent injuries.

#5: It Controls Weeds and Moisture

In a garden, mulch can prevent weeds from growing and robbing your plants of essential nutrients.

In a playground, mulch absorbs water and prevents puddles from forming, which is a safety feature with children running around.

#6: It Prevents Soil Erosion

Mulch prevents soil erosion by breaking the fall of rainwater and preventing soil from washing away in heavy rain. It acts as a natural barrier to keep your garden or playground intact and protected from erosion.

#7: It Attracts Beneficial Insects

Mulch provides a safe and appealing environment for insects that are beneficial to your garden, including those that eat pests that can destroy your plants.

#8: Mulch Is Beautiful!

Finally, mulch can create a beautiful appearance for a garden or play area. It comes in a variety of colors and, in the case of cedar mulch, it also provides a pleasing aroma.

Challenges of a DIY Mulch Project

Any DIY gardening project that involves mulch requires attention to detail. Before beginning, it’s essential to calculate the area of the surface(s) to be mulched because this calculation is what will help you determine how much mulch to buy. 

Anyone starting a new garden should use a topsoil calculator first to determine how much topsoil is needed to help the garden thrive. Then, calculate the amount of mulch needed to protect the soil.

Keep in mind that mulch is heavy and you may need a truck to transport it–or you should choose a company that will deliver bags of mulch to your home.

How Much Mulch Do You Need?

Calculating the amount of mulch you need isn’t complicated. All you need is the area of the surfaces to be covered. 

How Much Does Two Cubic Feet of Mulch Cover?

Most experts recommend that mulch should be between two and four inches deep to protect soil and prevent erosion. A single bag of mulch, which is two cubic feet and weighs 20 pounds, will cover 12 square feet of soil at a depth of two inches.

If you choose to apply four inches of mulch, then a single bag will cover six square feet of soil. You’ll need to decide in advance how deep you want the mulch to be, since that calculation will determine how much mulch to buy.

How Many Bags of Mulch on a Pallet?

Mulch pallets may vary somewhat in size, but the average pallet will hold between 50 and 70 bags of mulch.

To give an idea of what that would cover, 50 bags of mulch weigh 1,000 pounds and would cover 300 square feet at a depth of four inches, and 600 square feet at a depth of two inches.

Seventy bags of mulch would weigh 1,400 pounds and would cover 420 square feet at a depth of four inches, and 840 square feet at a depth of two inches.

Colorful playground with rubber mulch.

What is the Best Mulch for Playgrounds?

Many types of mulch are used in playgrounds, but one of the most popular is rubber mulch. People like rubber mulch because it absorbs moisture and prevents the formation of puddles. It also provides some protection for kids as rubber has the ability to absorb impact.

Other types of mulch that may be used in playgrounds include:

  • Engineered wood chips
  • Pine bark
  • Synthetic turf
  • Natural grass

Some of these require more frequent replacement than others, so the choice may be determined by cost.

How Long Does Rubber Mulch Last?

According to, rubber mulch may last as long as 20 years–far longer than organic mulch. The downside is that it is more expensive than wood mulch and if you buy it as a homeowner, it will take a while for you to recoup your investment.

Protect Your Garden or Playground with Mulch

Applying mulch made of wood chips, rubber, or some other material can protect your garden by minimizing erosion, maintaining moisture, and providing much-needed nutrients to your plants. On a playground, mulch prevents the formation of puddles and provides some protection to the children who play there.

Using mulch is something you can do to keep your soil healthy. The most important thing is to use mulch that will provide the benefits that are most important to you while also giving your garden or play area a pleasing appearance.

This entry was posted in DIY, Home & Garden and tagged , , , . By Aimee Parrott