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How Many Bags of Mulch Fit in a Minivan? (Should You Use A Truck Instead?)

Minivans are great vehicles for hauling just about everything. From furniture to bags of mulch a minivan can handle it all. 

But how much can they handle? How many bags of mulch will fit inside of a minivan? 

A minivan with all the seats removed or laid down can fit up 40 bags of mulch inside of it. A standard bag of mulch is approximately 2ft X 3ft. so you can fit 5 bags per layer and stack them 7 layers high (35 bags). You can then fit a few extra bags on the sides by the sliding door and in the back to bring you up to 40 bags. 

If you are willing to cram a few extra bags on top and even in the passenger seat of the minivan you could possibles get up to 45-50 bags of mulch in your minivan but with cramming them in like that you risk opening a bag and making a giant mess inside your minivan. 

The safest amount to transport in your minivan would be 35-40 bags of mulch. 

What affects how many bags of mulch fit in a Minivan?

Now that I have given you a number of bags of mulch that will fit in a minivan it is important for us to look at some caveats. For example if the mulch you are using is incredibly dense or heavy then transporting 40 bags in your minivan might not be a good idea as all of that weight could damage the shocks, transmission, etc. 

There are a few different factors that should be considered to help make sure that hauling the mulch in your minivan doesn’t damage it in some way. 

  • Typical bags of mulch will weigh approximately 20lbs each so putting 40 bags in your minivan will be 800lbs of cargo. A minivan can handle that much without any problems. However, if the bags of mulch you are moving weigh closer to 50lbs then you will be placing far too much weight in your vehicle.
  • It is best to put down cardboard boxes or even plywood on the floor of your minivan before you start loading up the bags of mulch. The metal rings that are on the floor that hold the seats in place can easily tear the bags open which will leave you with a giant mess and possible carpet staining as well. Taking a few minutes to put down cardboard or plywood is well worth it to protect the interior of your minivan. 
  • Safety is another important thing to consider when hauling that much mulch on your minivan. It will take you a little longer to stop because of the excess weight and since your minivan will be sitting lower to the ground you will also have to be careful when going over potholes, or speed bumps. You should leave more distance between yourself and the vehicle in front of you to stay safer. Driving slowly over any bumps or holes will also help to keep your minivan from getting damaged. 

Apart from these, there are some other important questions about hauling mulch as well. I will go into these next. 

Is a truck a better way to transport mulch than a minivan?

This depends on the amount of mulch that needs to be transported and the distance you will be traveling. Once you’ve figured out the quantity of mulch required, there are different ways of transporting it.

If the requirement is 1-5 bags, it can be easily transported in a car unless it is extremely heavy. In a minivan, up to 40 bags can be transported with ease unless they are extremely heavy mulch. 

If the requirement is more than 40 bags, a truck is the only choice to consider. However, the only way to get more than 40 bags in a pickup truck is by purchasing an entire pallet and having it loaded with a fork lift. 

The sides of a truck are not near as high as a minivan allows so you can actually fit more loose bags in a minivan than you can in the back of a pickup truck! 

A minivan with a 7-seater configuration can accommodate a maximum of 1000-1500lbs but beyond this range, a truck is the only way left. Also, if the transportation distance is considerably far along with huge quantities, trucking is the best choice.

If you need a lot more mulch then you will want to rent a commercial truck that is designed for loading and dumping and will likely want to purchase the mulch in bulk rather than by the bag at a local store. 

What kind of mulch should be used for gardening?

The type of mulch used mostly is organic mulch. It has an added advantage of enhancing the soil nutrients as the mulch decomposes with time. Generally, there are five types of organic mulch.

  • Bark – Ideal for areas that require less digging like trees, shrubs, gardens, etc.
  • Grass Clippings – Ideal for garden areas where the growth of weeds has to be curbed.
  • Newspaper – These are best suitable to transport plants to different regions or to lay flat around the base of plants and cover with bark or grass clippings to prevent weeds.
  • Shredded Leaves – The best of the available mulch that is free and can be used for anything
  • Straw and Hay – They are suitable for vegetable gardens

Apart from organic mulch, synthetic and inorganic mulch find their use in different fields.

What are the uses of a mulch?

  • Mulch helps in retaining the most essential soil nutrients.
  • Using mulch for the soil improves its condition, protects it from harsh climates, and boosts its fertility.
  • Mulch perfectly balances the soil with the external climatic conditions, i.e., keeps the soil cool in warm temperatures and prevents it from frost heaving in winters.
  • Mulch curbs the weed growth that has the potential to spoil the entire soil.
  • It is the best solution to prevent soil erosion.

Mulch is usually a 1.5 to a 2-inch layer on top of the soil. This can be increased or reduced according to the soil requirements. Time and again, mulch has proven to be the best solution and a perfect aid to gardening or farming.

Are the synthetic and inorganic types of mulch useful?

The most common synthetic and inorganic mulch types are – landscape fabric, stone or gravel, and black plastic. Each of these is capable of blocking the weeds and holding the moisture content to a significant extent. Also, they don’t require frequent replacements. Not to forget the fact that these kinds of mulch don’t increase the soil nutrients.

  • Stone and Gravel –For areas that require a sound drainage system and for plants requiring extra heat, the gravel and stone mulch is the most appropriate choice. This practice is quite prevalent in Mediterranean herb and rain gardens.
  • Plastic and Fabric –These are ideal choices for plants that don’t require constant checks and frequent fertilization. Shrubs, foundation plants, etc. make the best use of this kind of mulch.

It is essential to keep in mind that the stones are heavy and hard to remove before using them as a mulch, as it isn’t an easy thing to do. Remember that plastic tends to melt in high temperatures causing even the useful plants to die along with the weeds.