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View Full Version : So who really does not like cutting grass?


mrusk
10-05-2005, 09:56 PM
I'm about to finish my first full year in business and i have to say that i do not like cutting grass. At first, when i only mowed 2 lawns a week i loved it. Not i am up to 12 a week ($600 bucks) and i can't stand it. I can not belive i am the only member here that does not like it. How do you guys that have been doing it for 10-15 years stand it? Do you just keep doing it because you can't do anything else?

I only cut grass 1.5 days a week, well i used too, when it acctually rained and the grass grew. The rest of the week i do hardscapes. Its a pain when i have to leave my 12k block job to go mow some lawns. I enjoy doing the block. I don't like doing the lawns. I am considering dropping my lawns next year. It seems like its all or nothing. If i could pick up 40 more lawns i could hire two guys an never touch a mower again. I may dump a bunch of dough on advertising in the spring and try to fill a whole route in a mouth, but i just do not know if its possible.

Matt

Scotts' Yard Care
10-05-2005, 10:13 PM
:) I love running machinery so mowing, leaf work and anything I can do with
control sticks or a steering wheel is what I love. I used to enjoy grading and lawn installation too until everyone wanted sod instead of seed. Glad everyone doesn't like the same thing :waving:

Brianslawn
10-05-2005, 10:25 PM
"find a job you enjoy doing... and you'll never work a day in your life."

Tom-N-Texas
10-05-2005, 10:44 PM
The lawn service is not the perfect job...but what is? You say you mow 12 lawn a week and $600. If you mowed 24 that would be $1200. Not many people make that kind of money per week. I will say the lawn service gets a little better when you're able to hire help to do most of the work for you.

Jpocket
10-05-2005, 10:47 PM
You mow 12 Lawns and your complaining...Try mowing 60 Solo

promower
10-05-2005, 10:49 PM
I really enjoyed it until this year, peak season we were mowing 55 hrs a week, I'm burnt out mowing. Next year I'm doing installs and letting the guys mow, if I dont cut a single blade of grass next year it wont bother me. If you hate it doing 12 a week wait till you get 100 a week. :dizzy:

kc2006
10-05-2005, 10:50 PM
Honestly, I'm opposite. I don't look at the money factor. Is that what it is for you? Do you just like the hardscapes because of the really good money or do you really just like it?

For me, mowing pays good, next year it should be even better as I'm trying to get mostly commercial accounts. Good money is always a nice thing and in the back of your mind you really want it to be there. But put me on a mower and I'll go all day and enjoy it. I hate the "business" part of this, sitting at the computer doing billing. I also hate getting ready in the morning, but once i hit that turf its all good. Just me though.

Lawn-Scapes
10-05-2005, 11:00 PM
I admit that after 15 years... I don't like it much. I am tired and bored with it. I used to enjoy the finished product but don't care much for that anymore either. I continue to do it because.. I am good at it and I make very good money doing it. I keep buying new stuff just to try to keep myself interested and have much more than I need. Next years goal is to build to a two man crew and branch off to landscaping. We'll see.........

Kelly's Landscaping
10-05-2005, 11:13 PM
You get to a point where everything is reflex little thought required to make every turn on the lawn perfect every blade of grass cut with the weed wacker effortless. No challenges just nice open mowing and all day out in the fresh air. You are free to think about anything and everything what order do I want to drive my list in how much of it will I finish in the next 2hrs and 13 mins before heading home. How much did I make today to the exact cent something thatís a bit more entertaining when you did 27 lawns and no 2 were the same price. Then you plan you week after that new ideas on growing what new equipment do you want what do you really need what benefits will it have. After that you can go much deeper think of women you had trips you have taken go deeper still go grab the deadbeat that stiffed you and nail him to a tree in your woods what every you want to think about you can. That is what makes cutting lawns so much fun is you get to know your self better then most ever will. One long 12 hour day dream thatís is what my job is and I love every second of it. Many think you need to be a simpleton to like this kind of work I think on the contrary you need to be above average intelligence to love it anyone can do this but only a smart person can entertain them selves all day just by thinking aloud. Which is why I have 170 lawns and will be at 225 next year simply because I am having the time of my life if it was not fun I would not be doing this.

kc2006
10-05-2005, 11:19 PM
Kelly's Landscaping, I agree 100%! For me when I'm on the mower, theres little effort or thought on how to do the work, so its just "me time" basicly. I can think of some pretty stupid stuff some times :D I once planned a whole engine build for my car and figured the price it would be and everything. Good stuff.

Keith
10-05-2005, 11:23 PM
I hate the way things go sometimes. I hate the heat and humidity sometimes. I hate when stuff breaks down. I hate gas prices lately. And sometimes I get a customer I don't like, but after nearly 20 years of doing this I still love it. :)

olderthandirt
10-05-2005, 11:27 PM
hate it, I quit cutting 20 yrs ago and then started again a few yrs ago for other reasons. Well the other reasons were still not worth it so this will be my last yr cutting.

nriddle77
10-05-2005, 11:34 PM
There are lots of things about it I do like, and only a few that I don't. For me, the pros outweigh the cons. That would not be true if I worked inside, for someone else, on their terms.

Az Gardener
10-05-2005, 11:47 PM
I spend a lot of time doing strategic work, planning, sales and I miss mowing. At the end of the day you can look back and see you have completed something. Not to many jobs that you can say that about. The one thing no one has mentioned is, the beauty of maintenance is you sell it once and you do the same job over and over getting more efficient every visit and making more money. Once that 12 K block job is done you have to go and sell another job. Not so much pressure until you have 50 employees and a 50,000 payroll to meet every other week, then moving looks pretty good. Be careful what you wish for.

promower
10-06-2005, 12:26 AM
I dont hate my career path, but like any job it gets old. I'm sure after a long winter I will be dying to jump on a mower, but this year just wasnt as fun for me as years past. I'm ready to cross a new bridge and take a break from the 6 days a week mowing schedule, I'm about as burnt out as the grass was a month ago

Capitol Lawn
10-06-2005, 12:54 AM
You mow 12 Lawns and your complaining...Try mowing 60 Solo
solo???
thats alot
how old are you?

MOW ED
10-06-2005, 06:58 AM
I don't hate it at all. I love the challenge and I love the compliments. The mowing part does not seem hard to do as anyone can mow a lawn but it takes a certain talent to mow week after week and please the customer every time. After you do that then you look for ways to be more efficient and make more profit.
You sound like you are already re-evaluating your career path which is a good thing. Mayby you can manage the business without actually mowing in the field like you said and concentrate on the hardscape jobs. You are young, you'll figure it out.

LawnJohn
10-06-2005, 07:45 AM
I wish I was outside doing lawns than being in this building.

I make good money, but corporate America sucks.

mrusk
10-06-2005, 07:47 AM
I think what it comes down to is i like to build stuff. It doesn't matter what it is i just enough working with my hands and building something. I do not even like planting plants. My goal is to have two divisions in my company.. home improvement and hardscapes.

Next year i have to hire an employee. The thing is he can't come cut grass with me unless i buy another lazer. The lawns here are so big that if he was the trimmer, he'd be sitting in the truck for 20-40 minutes untill i finish up mowing. So thats another thing.

Just a side though, customers seem to give you alot more respect when they see you as a 'hardscape contractor' and not a lawn monkey. What annoys me about lawns is also getting in and out of the truck all day long. If i could spend all day on my lazer and just stop to go the bathroom and for lunch i might acctually not mind it that bad.

Matt

mak2
10-06-2005, 07:49 AM
My other job is very high stress 3 days a week. The money is good, but the stress is very high. After mowing lawns all day I feel like I have been on vacation. I also enjoy driving by them on my way to work after I mow them. Anyone ever notice nice lawns look better 2 days after mowing and a little rain?

TJLC
10-06-2005, 07:55 AM
The thought of owning and operating my own business still appeals to me after about 6-7 years of doing this but I do admit I am mainly in this for the money.

PMLAWN
10-06-2005, 08:01 AM
I don't work the field much but I love cutting grass with the mowers. But I hate trimming and edging. I do an industrial park on Sunday for fun and ride with the headphones on to the game. 3 hours of just riding and football or racing.
I would not do this work 40 hours a week myself as it is hard work and I am old. There is not enough money in it to work it myself.

lawnprosteveo
10-06-2005, 03:22 PM
I like being outside, except in the hottest part of the year. I like making the yards look nice too.

Fantasy Lawns
10-06-2005, 06:05 PM
That's what employees are fore;-)

I still go out 2-3 a week with my main crew (5 men) but this is only like 15-20 hrs per week in the heat of summer or run a crew if one of the crew leaders is out

Aside from that ... it doesn't really bother me .... cept 2 weeks ago when we had to cut 120+ in a 12 hr day

Tonyr
10-06-2005, 06:52 PM
mowing (ride on) is the only thing I do like, it's the trimming, edging, spraying that bores me, hot, dirty, hard, best easiest money is sitting on the ZTR.

Then on rough paddock type jobs, even that gets boring fast, and at the end of the week I feel pretty banged up from bouncing around on a ztr.

bobbygedd
10-06-2005, 07:14 PM
cutting grass is the most wonderful thing on god's green earth. i was an employee on someone elses timeclock for 21 long years. the grass has set me free, god bless america

gman44
10-06-2005, 08:16 PM
I still come home smiling after a hot day behind my machine . Ive been at it over 11 yrs now and left behind a high pressure job in management . Do my bones ache sometimes ? Yup , but I dont spend any money in a gym or tanning booth . Its great to be outdoors and work at my own pace .Ive got my daughter involved and its a good paying part time job for her . We love eating lunch together in the shade of an elm or sitting on the trailer . Wouldnt trade it for anything else . :D

mrusk
10-06-2005, 08:53 PM
I'm not saying i do not like working for myself, working outdoors, or in the green industry. All i was saying was i don't like mowing. I think in 2 or 3 years i want to be doing just hardscapes. No mowing, no plantings, no trimming, no mulch. Just hardscapes.

Matt

jfenton
10-06-2005, 09:08 PM
Maybe hire 1 guy?

FrankenScagMachines
10-06-2005, 09:35 PM
I don't "Hate it" hate it, but I really don't get all crazy about it anymore... sometimes I look forward to mowin a big lawn in comfortable weather but I'm never really stoked about the trimming, edging, blowing, etc. especially in hot weather... used to love this stuff.. The two things about this job i still love, is leaf work in fall (I LOVE FALL) and snow removal (LOVE SNOW, its a challenge every year to see who will whip who! who will win, me or the snow?)

wacamaster
10-06-2005, 10:55 PM
I like Kelley's comment about 1 long day dream. I am so comfortable with my equipment I don't have to think about what I am doing. I LOVE mowing grass. Of course when you wake up in the morning and know you have to cut 12 hours straight.. it doesn't seem like the most appealing thing.
I like it a lot for the money.. don't think I'd like it so much if I was one of my employees working for an hourly rate. However, I do have another source of income that has proven at times to be more lucrative, but I hate doing it.

I consider myself a proffesional poker player (someone who plays for a living). In the winter I do not plow and use poker playing to pay the bills. It's never a guranteed income which is one thing, but it just sux sitting in a chair all day. You feel liek hell at the end of the day. When I'm done mowing grass I may be worn out sometimes but I feel great.. blasting my music all the way home, like a load of serotonin surging through my brain.

Another reason I love it is because you can get sooo much done. I hate meticulous work. I love just bustin out Acre afetr Acre after Acre. My customers couldn't pay me enough to weed.

Lastly... on a very very very rare occasion... like 1-2 times a year.. it's cool to get buzzed up and go bust ass choppin grass.

PMLAWN
10-07-2005, 09:50 AM
IThe two things about this job i still love, is leaf work in fall (I LOVE FALL) and snow removal (LOVE SNOW, its a challenge every year to see who will whip who! who will win, me or the snow?)
I think deep down that you like the toys the best, no?

new2nash
10-07-2005, 11:15 AM
Mowing definitely appeals to creative, intelligent, "thinker" types. I love getting into the zone where the mowing is accomplished almost on auto-pilot and I can use the time to write song lyrics, add up the day's gross, calculate my net worth, incorporate additional points to my belief that adaptation has occurred but evolution never did...things of that nature.

tinman
10-07-2005, 12:27 PM
I love mowing, but I can see how it can burn you out over time. Same thing day after day. Drive around all day & ride the ztr at each stop. Vacations are important to prevent burn out. Also my favorite thing to do while at work I can listen to whatever radio program I want all day. Most jobs don't have that priveledge. Simple things like that make running my own business worth it.
Go to work in a plant or factory for a week or 2 & stare at the same people, walls, bosses, day after day & mowing for yourself will look good again. I keep my timecard from my old job on my desk to remind me of how good I have it now.

mrusk
10-07-2005, 01:01 PM
What i guess i was trying to get to with this thread is don't you guys want to be more than just a lawn boy? Don't you want to move into other aspects of the green industry?

Matt

walker-talker
10-07-2005, 01:07 PM
Mowing, I don't mind. Edging and trimming, I don't care for. Cleaning, I don't mind. The fact that I am running a business, I love. The fact that I am solo and have much room to grow and it's up to me to decide how that is going to be done....I love. The fact that this is my ticket out of a 14yr relationdhip with a factory job and I have pretty much just tolerated, I love. I have always wanted to run a business...I am with this and have so many challenges ahead of me...I love. I have been in the factory 14yrs....the last 6 years without a raise (they took away the cost of living raise) and I can't do a thing about that (other than leave)...I hate.

I was thinking the other day, I have been at this job for 14 years and have 25 more years in the workforce (that's a lot of years)...what do I want to do???

walker-talker
10-07-2005, 01:10 PM
What i guess i was trying to get to with this thread is don't you guys want to be more than just a lawn boy? Don't you want to move into other aspects of the green industry?

Matt
Most definetely YES!!!! Go where the money is, and mowing has one, if not the least profit margins of services related to this industry. Monday I am meeting with one of my clients to do some landscaping and I am pretty excited. Other than design work, I have landscaping expierence, so I know what I am doing. Like I was saying, mowing brings in the least so why not venture out.....there are no limits.

tinman
10-07-2005, 01:11 PM
What i guess i was trying to get to with this thread is don't you guys want to be more than just a lawn boy? Don't you want to move into other aspects of the green industry?

Matt
Good point...but that is what is great about being your own boss. You choose to stay small & simple or grow big & complicated. Both work for different people at different points in their lives. And yes I want to diversify (not just green industry work either) so when it is dry I stil have work, or in the winter I still have work, or on rainy days I have fill in work.

topsites
10-07-2005, 01:13 PM
You mow 12 Lawns and your complaining...Try mowing 60 Solo

I know, right? LOL

I love grass-cutting, it's the EASIEST physical labor for the money in this business, EVERY other job is harder on me. Of course you can always do loader/excavator work but then those are 30 thousand dollar machines and if you think people have a problem paying $60/hour for grass-cutting, wait until you have to charge a minimum of 400 dollars for heavier machinery (well a mini-ex isn't exactly heavy machinery, but it IS a lot heavier than a Wb).
Grass-cutting only sucks when I'm not getting paid right or my machine isn't working right... Somehow I suspect one of these is the problem here, although perhaps the thread starter just don't like this type of work, in which case I further agree it's time to find something else to do.

topsites
10-07-2005, 01:22 PM
Kelly's Landscaping, I agree 100%! For me when I'm on the mower, theres little effort or thought on how to do the work, so its just "me time" basicly. I can think of some pretty stupid stuff some times :D I once planned a whole engine build for my car and figured the price it would be and everything. Good stuff.

I like the Sony A-track Mp3 Cd-player. I just got done burning a Dance Electronica remix with 54 songs on one CD (that's a light one, you can fit close to 100 songs on a CD in mp3 format).
Once I put the Koss earbuds in my ears and put the Stihl earmuffs over it, crank the music up so high I can't even HEAR the machine, and I'm in my own world. About the only thing frustrates me at that point is when some pyrite miner comes around off the side of the road and THINKS I'm about to stop my world for his trifle.

PMLAWN
10-07-2005, 04:55 PM
About the only thing frustrates me at that point is when some pyrite miner comes around off the side of the road and THINKS I'm about to stop my world for his trifle.
I believe what he thinks is right for if you meet, HE WINS.

premierlawncare
10-07-2005, 05:06 PM
Kelly, Nice post. Thats what I do all day. Think. Think about growing my business, women, memories, trips to take, beating down a pita, whatever.

I was in sales the last 10 years. I am 30. I just bought a LCO with 100 accounts. I love it. I love the hard work. Its man work. When I come home after working 8-12 hours I know I worked hard. I also know I made some money.

Its good money and unlimited to how big you can grow.
I'm my own boss.
I dont take sh*t from anyone.
I make my own hours.
I can work all day and not talk to anyone. (my goal) Except for new bids.

Pita's ruin my day. I got clip so they are in big trouble. I will track their revenue and find out if they are profitable or not. They will get raised if needed. Then maybe I might like them more.

Jpocket
10-07-2005, 05:15 PM
solo???
thats alot
how old are you?

Im 19 years of age

Howard Roark
10-07-2005, 10:00 PM
All we do is mow, and after this year I've come to the conclusion that:

Mowing solo for your own business is ALWAYS better than working for a corporation.

Mowing with a helper sweetens the deal.

Next year I'll run a 3 man crew, and with only 1 assignment per lawn (as in, I'll mow the front, you guys do the rest), life will be sweet. Then I get out of the truck completely! :cool:

All in all I do still enjoy making a nice St. Augustine lawn look like carpet.

Keith
10-07-2005, 10:18 PM
All in all I do still enjoy making a nice St. Augustine lawn look like carpet.


Maybe it's a St. Augustine thing :cool:

stumper1620
10-08-2005, 07:34 AM
the only time i dislike mowing is if I'm on a crappy lawn full of weeds stirring up the pollen. Otherwise on a good lawn I'm in 7th heaven! I've spent enough of my life having the Man decide How much I'm gonna be paid, when I'm gonna be paid and When I'm gonna work to be able to get paid.
being on my own I can make my schedule work around my life, for the 1st time this year I have been able to see my kids for more than 15 minutes before bed, I have moved My schedule around so I can go see my boy run cross country at the school, To see how great he runs ( proud father here, he has taken 1st place at 4 of his meets this year.) rather than just hear about it when i get home is priceless. :D
Oh ya, and nothing can beat the satisfaction of taking that crappy pollen filled lawn and turning it into a carpet of beautiful turf in one season.