How Much Gravel, Sand, and Mulch to Buy for Your Garden

By The National Gardening Association, Bob Beckstrom, Karan Davis Cutler, Kathleen Fisher, Phillip Giroux, Judy Glattstein, Michael MacCaskey, Bill Marken, Charlie Nardozzi, Sally Roth, Marcia Tatroe, Lance Walheim, Ann Whitman

Part of Gardening All-in-One For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Gravel, mulch, sand, small rocks, and soil amendments can play a healthy and decorative role in your garden. Gravel, sand, and rocks are generally sold by weight. For coverage that’s 2 inches (5 centimeters) deep, use the following amounts:

  • 1 U.S. ton covers approximately 100 square feet.

  • 1 metric ton covers approximately 10 square meters.

Soil amendments and mulch are generally sold by volume. For coverage that’s 2 inches (5 centimeters) deep, use the following amounts:

  • 1 cubic yard covers approximately 160 square feet.

  • 1 cubic meter covers approximately 20 square meters.

Use the following table to convert U.S. and metric measurements. In each case, the conversions are approximately equal:

1 centimeter ≈ 0.4 inches 1 inch ≈ 2.5 centimeters
1 meter ≈ 39 inches ≈ 1.1 yards 1 yard ≈ 0.9 meter
1 kilometer ≈ 0.6 mile 1 mile ≈ 1.6 kilometers
1 liter ≈ 1.1 quarts 1 quart ≈ 0.9 liter
1 kilogram ≈ 2.2 pounds 1 pound ≈ 0.4 kilograms
1 gram ≈ 0.04 ounce 1 ounce ≈ 31 grams