It doesn’t take long after pulling into to Pasco’s Masonry & Landscape Depot, off U.S. Hwy. 301 and just a short drive from Wesley Chapel, to notice that they probably have what you came in to find.
There are piles of various mulches — red, brown, cypress, pine bark, etc. — to your right, and stacks of decorative rock, flagging and veneers all around you. There are slabs of marble for your countertops and everything from black and red lava rocks to black canyon granite in wire barrels and wooden buckets, as well as more than 3,000 trees and shrubs for your landscaping needs.
Piles of materials for masonry construction, like 20-foot rebar (which owner Alfredo Colon says is preferred by contractors and not accessible everywhere), cinder blocks and precast lintels, also are available.
Inside the small storefront, there are various tools and other landscaping and masonry items for sale.
“We have pretty much everything,’’ Alfredo says.
And if Pasco’s Masonry doesn’t have what you need, Alfredo says he can get it for you — usually for less than it would cost you from some of the more familiar chain stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s.
Colon knows that running his family business against those bigger and more recognizable options isn’t easy, but he says he’s up for the challenge. What he lacks in brand recognition for the moment, he makes up for with cheaper prices, better and more personalized customer service and accessibility to Pasco Masonry’s management.
Selling in bulk, in addition to also carrying the smaller bags of mulch and rocks that you might be looking for, also sets him apart. You can buy a yard of mulch for $26, or if you desire, just a bag for $2.50.
“We tell people to just come on in, back up your truck and we’ll load it up,’’ Alfredo says. “We try to make it an easy trip for our customers, so they don’t have to park, grab a cart, walk around a store and fill it up, pay for it, then go unload it back into their car or truck.”
After 27 years as a contractor in Westchester County, NY, Alfredo and his family — wife Clarissa, 24-year-old son Andrew and 20-year-old daughter LoriAnne — moved to Florida two years ago to get away from the cold.
He says he always had the desire to own his own masonry house, and thought the area between Wesley Chapel, Dade City and Zephyrhills would be a perfect spot, considering all of the dirt roads and new construction.
Although he had his eye on a few spots in Wesley Chapel, he settled on a spacious four-acre property in Dade City that formerly was occupied by JLP Motorsports.
Pasco’s Masonry & Landscaping Depot opened seven months ago, and Alfredo says that business has so far been good enough to exceed expectations.
“It won’t be too tough once we get going,” he says. “Every new business takes 2-3 years to get going, and what we offer here and what Lowe’s or Home Depot offers is a lot different. You can’t buy bulk material at Lowe’s, and if you do, you have to order it online and it’s going to cost you three times as much as I’m selling it for.”
Alfredo, who says he was the superintendent on the George Washington and Manhattan Bridge projects in New York City, says his varied background makes his business multi-dimensional.
For adding hardscape to your property, which can help increase its value, he sells Belgard products, which is backed by the Good Housekeeping Seal for quality and assurance.
At Pasco’s Masonry, there is a large, stone fireplace built, as well as an outdoor deck, fire pit and decorative retaining walls. Not only does Alfredo have the Belgard products for such projects, he says “I’ll even build one for you.”
Before getting into construction, Alfredo says he studied horticulture at the state University of New York at Farmingdale – which is part of the reason Pasco’s Masonry & Landscaping Depot specializes in both of Alfredo’s loves.
And now, with many homeowners looking to replace mulch, trees and shrubs that were displaced or washed away by Hurricane Irma, Alfredo says Pasco’s Masonry can help.
In fact, not only does the store deliver, but Alfredo says he also can come to your home and help shape what your landscaping should look like, as well as recommended the kinds of foliage you should be planting.
“I always had an interest in landscaping and trees,’’ Alfredo says. “Now I see the opportunity to get what I always wanted. I like to design stuff for people. I’ll go out there and lay it out, and let you know which shrubs and trees you need.”
The same goes for granite countertops. Pasco Masonry & Landscaping Depot will come out to measure your counters, cut your marble (or whatever surface you choose) for you, and then return and install it.
Since opening, Alfredo says he has already done five countertops.
With a touch of pride in his voice, Alfredo says the biggest difference between Pasco’s Masonry & Landscaping Depot and the chains is that his is a true family business.
Clarissa helps manage the store, and when she’s not busy with her full-time college schedule, LoriAnne pitches in as well.
Meanwhile, Andrew is learning the ropes, as Alfredo’s hope is to one day leave the business to him.
“That’s my goal,’’ he says.
Pasco Masonry & Landscaping is located at 10301 U.S. 301 in Dade City, and is open Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m-4 p.m., and 7:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. on Saturday. For more information, check out PascosMasonry.com, @PascosMasonry on Facebook, or call (352) 437-4408.