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Garden Math - Ordering Mulch and Topsoil

Don’t end up with a driveway full of excess topsoil and mulch waiting for friends and family to haul away the surplus for their gardens.  Do a bit of math in advance and order just the amount needed. 

Keep in mind a cubic yard covers 300 square feet of ground at a depth of one inch.  Now grab a tape measure, calculator and get ready to do some basic math to calculate your gardening needs. 

Multiply the length of the garden area to be amended or mulched by its width in feet.  This gives you the square footage of your garden.  Record this on your landscape plan for future reference.

Next multiply the depth of the material, in feet, that you want to incorporate or mulch.  Convert inches into feet by dividing the number of inches you want to add by 12.  Multiply the length times the width times the depth to get cubic feet.

Divide this number by 27 to convert it to cubic yards.  Now you are ready to place your order.

A bit more information:  This may help when buying peat moss. One cubic foot bale of peat moss covers 24 square feet of garden at a depth of one inch.  A 2.2 cubic foot bale covers 50 square feet one inch deep.  And a 3.8 cubic foot bale covers 90 square feet one inch deep.  Incorporate this layer into the top 6 to 12 inches of soil to improve drainage or increase the water holding capacity.

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