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GravyTrain
09-23-2010, 12:42 AM
Been checking out some of these other threads and figured I'd throw my own shots out there. These are from two of my favorite yards. Both pay well, both ladies love my work, and their yards are both small and well maintained as far as weed control and irrigation. Here's the first one.

GravyTrain
09-23-2010, 12:44 AM
Here's the other yard, I just about ran out of light on this one, so the shots are pretty poor. The last one is a quick shot of my truck and trailer. I'll be getting the trailer lettered this winter, once I decide on a solid logo.

FinerCutslawnCare
09-23-2010, 01:37 AM
Why use the push for the yards when you have the 48? Both yards look great and the edging looks amazing. Very professional looking and great curb appeal.

THEGOLDPRO
09-23-2010, 01:42 AM
edging is top notch, the wheel marks from the push mowers look downright hidious.

GravyTrain
09-23-2010, 01:54 AM
edging is top notch, the wheel marks from the push mowers look downright hidious.

Figured I would get that from someone, didn't expect it so soon. Sorry you don't like it. Personally, I like them.

As for using the push instead of the 48", the pictures don't do it justice, but because of the slope of the yard, the corners scalp pretty bad. It takes about an extra 5 minutes with the push, and I think it looks better. It is worth the extra 5 minutes to me.

THEGOLDPRO
09-23-2010, 02:01 AM
i dunno to me it looks like you cut it when the yard was wicked wet and the wheel marks sank into the ground causing ruts all over. the quality of cut is great its nice and flat with no stringers, but the wheel marks take away from the manicured look of the yard and make it look horrible sorry to say.

GravyTrain
09-23-2010, 02:04 AM
Interesting...it was dry as a bone when mowing. Down here in the south, that's about as close as I get to "striping" on bermuda lawns. Maybe I'm doing something wrong, but until a customer complains, I don't have much reason to stop. At my previous house, when I actually had a yard to speak of, I would do as much as I could to get that type of look.

To each his own, I'm glad to get all sorts of opinions.

FinerCutslawnCare
09-23-2010, 02:07 AM
Interesting...it was dry as a bone when mowing. Down here in the south, that's about as close as I get to "striping" on bermuda lawns. Maybe I'm doing something wrong, but until a customer complains, I don't have much reason to stop. At my previous house, when I actually had a yard to speak of, I would do as much as I could to get that type of look.

To each his own, I'm glad to get all sorts of opinions.

I have never mowed bermuda before, but the way it looks it wouldn't stripe very easy:confused:

bobcat48
09-23-2010, 09:22 AM
Looks good.

Tyler's Lawn Maintenance
09-23-2010, 09:33 AM
I can stripe Bermuda fully with my 21. Those are not stripes, but just wheel marks. I am like the Gold Pro,the lawn doesn't look manicured at all. It looks like half of the lawns in my neighborhood where the homeowners try to stripe their lawns themselves.
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Oakleaf landscape
09-23-2010, 09:35 AM
Hey man I think that yard looks really good. The 21" wheel marks look great to me. Nice job!

Oakleaf landscape
09-23-2010, 09:36 AM
Just because a yard has stripes doesn't mean it's manicured. This guy has a great attention to detail.

Kennedy Landscaping
09-23-2010, 11:11 AM
I agree, edging and everything look nice, but I'm not real big on the wheel marks either. You may try a PVC pipe filled with concrete as a striper. Did that on my 21" and love it. Looks like your truck could use some help with that trailer. May AAL's or timbrens?

GravyTrain
09-23-2010, 01:59 PM
Thanks to all for the comments, both positive and negative. As far as the "striping" i mentioned, I never meant to infer that I considered this yard striped. I was referring to the fact that this grass simply does not lay down like some of the other grass I've seen on here.

If anyone has suggestions on how to not leave tire tracks when mowing, I'm all ears.

As for the help on the trailer, yea, the truck is a little underpowered, '95 1500 with about 80k miles on it, but it gets the job done. gets 7mpg when pulling but I don't travel much more than 2 miles for any of my properties, my furthest commute is 5 miles. If you are referring to the angle of the trailer, I think it's the perspective of the picture. also...AAL's or timbrens? not following there.

Kennedy Landscaping
09-23-2010, 03:06 PM
Thanks to all for the comments, both positive and negative. As far as the "striping" i mentioned, I never meant to infer that I considered this yard striped. I was referring to the fact that this grass simply does not lay down like some of the other grass I've seen on here.

If anyone has suggestions on how to not leave tire tracks when mowing, I'm all ears.

As for the help on the trailer, yea, the truck is a little underpowered, '95 1500 with about 80k miles on it, but it gets the job done. gets 7mpg when pulling but I don't travel much more than 2 miles for any of my properties, my furthest commute is 5 miles. If you are referring to the angle of the trailer, I think it's the perspective of the picture. also...AAL's or timbrens? not following there.

Thats why I suggested the concrete striper. It lays the grass over pretty good I've found.

And AAL's are Add A Leafs, they beef up your current leaf springs to hold a heavier load better. And timbrens are just bigger bump stops than what your truck has from the factory. They don't let it sag so much when under a heavy load.

Tyler's Lawn Maintenance
09-23-2010, 05:35 PM
I don't use anything to stripe my Bermuda accounts other than a piece of PVC pipe filled with gravel on some occasions. I don't even use it half the time and my accounts have defined stripes.
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ShooterK2
09-23-2010, 06:55 PM
Looks real good. We have nothing but Bermuda around here as well, and on the thick ones, there's just no way (that I've found) to NOT leave wheel marks, especially with a 21". They usually go away pretty quickly, however. The only yards I see that don't have them (if they were mowed with a 21") are the ones cut really short, and most customers don't want that.

To folks that don't know, trying to mow thick Bermuda without leaving wheel tracks is kinda like vacuuming without leaving the marks on the carpet. No matter how bad you DON'T want it to happen, it just does anyway. Bad thing is, it seems like, the nicer they lawn, the worse they show up.

Anyway, Gravy Train, your work looks top notch to me. I'm sure your customers are very happy.

93Chevy
09-23-2010, 07:09 PM
You obviously take a lot of pride in your work. Keep it up.

95Z71
09-24-2010, 02:19 AM
Yard looks sharp and so does the edge. Is there anyway to not get the wheel marks? I get the same thing on my lawn. What about using a reel mower? Would that help?

ShooterK2
09-24-2010, 09:06 AM
Cutting it with a reel mower would definitely help, especially if you cut it shorter. But reel mowers are expensive, kinda slow, and most folks don't want to pay to have that service. I'm no expert (since I've never used one), but you should check out some of the lawns featured in the "Post Pics of Bermuda Lawns" thread. Just awesome.

GravyTrain
09-24-2010, 11:11 AM
Yard looks sharp and so does the edge. Is there anyway to not get the wheel marks? I get the same thing on my lawn. What about using a reel mower? Would that help?

I was looking for the same answers. Shooter a few posts above mentioned that he has not found away either on the thicker bermuda lawns.

As for the reel mower, I'm not a position to spend that kind of money on a mower I'd use on a handful of my customers. On top of that, most of the people with lawns like this, don't like short grass. Plus, my understanding is that with a reel mower, you have to mow MUCH more often. These yards you see are mowed every 2 weeks. With a reel mower, that gets bumped up to every 4-5 days. They don't want to triple their expense, I'm sure.

95Z71
09-24-2010, 02:09 PM
Gravy Train, I know what you mean by the expense of a reel mower. Another reason why I don't have one and the fact I have look locally and can't find anyone to service them. I am in Cabot, AR...I need to update my profile. lol

georgiagrass
09-27-2010, 09:16 PM
Hi Gravy: Thank you for sharing your mowing pics with us. It is clear that you strive for a detailed and manicured look. I hate to pile on with the comments about the wheel ruts, but personally I don't like that look. Granted, with Bermuda cut that high, it's difficult to avoid, especially with a 21. Using wider tire mowers works better -- we would probably use a Walker on those properties, but even that will leave marks where the grass lays down. We have a few properties that insist on leaving the Bermuda cut high (and thus leaves tracks); we require the crews to blow the tracks out with a blower and it leaves a more (in my opinion) professional look. Please take these comments in the spirit they are offered.

A couple of points regarding the plants at the front of the first house. First, that crape myrtle has gotten too big for that space. It looks sloppy laying on the roof. Might be time for a little crape murder. Second, what's going on with the shrub on the front right corner? It looks out of control and is inconsistent with the pruning of the other shrubs. Just my 2 cents.

Ignore the guys talking about stripes. That's all those yankee types think about as they cut all those fescue lawns. :)

mowerdude777
09-27-2010, 09:42 PM
Looks nice I really like the edges

SuperPROlawnScalper
09-27-2010, 10:51 PM
wow, those edges look nice. i'm a concrete finisher, but i mow foreclosure homes.
not having a landscape background i'm wondering how you get those edges so nice? what height do you cut and what type edger?

that concrete looks out of place with that nice grass, especially the first one where they did the curb cut out

GravyTrain
09-28-2010, 12:14 PM
I use a curved shaft stihl edger to get the edges, and as for the height, i'd say anywhere from 3"-3.5" on this yard. As for the concrete, around here I can't say that there is a lot of attention paid to the concrete work. I've never noticed that before, but now that you mention it, I see what you are talking about.

KE-llc
09-28-2010, 01:29 PM
mow it with the 48" and then it'll look top notch ;) i bet i could keep it from scalpin hahaaa

BrunoT
10-01-2010, 05:27 PM
Figured I would get that from someone, didn't expect it so soon. Sorry you don't like it. Personally, I like them.

As for using the push instead of the 48", the pictures don't do it justice, but because of the slope of the yard, the corners scalp pretty bad. It takes about an extra 5 minutes with the push, and I think it looks better. It is worth the extra 5 minutes to me.

I think the lawn looks very nice. I doubt you'd have any complaints.

However, those wheel tracks do strike me as too deep and more of a flaw than an asset. I realize it is the nature of Bermuda when mowed tall to do that. Partly you are probably seeing "footprinting" of the lawn due to the dry conditions.

I mow a lot of bermuda here, though it is hybrid and from a height of 1.25" early to about 2.5" this time of year. So later in the season it looks a lot like what you have there.

My experience is that the bigger tires of a wide area mower will leave less tracking in the grass. It's true that you can get more scalping with a big deck, but your TT HP gives a really nice cut and can handle most lawns that are well graded like these. They are not "flat", but darn close.

Dang, I keep seeing more stuff. If by "corners" you mean that you get scalping at the edges where you are part on concrete, part on lawn, just make that first pass with 50% overlap on the concrete and it avoids that. Hard to explain, but it works.

Be sure you have set your antiscalps correctly for the mowing height. It's not always what the manual or deck decals say, either. On Bermuda you want them to almost be touching constantly. The higher they are from the ground the more dips you'll get on that side, and hence more scalping. The problem with mowing Bermuda at 3.5" is that by the time your antiscalp wheels hit soil where they actually work, your deck is already 3.5" down into the soil, and hence low enough to scalp.
Also remember that with wear your antiscalps get smaller and allow more "slop" that can result in "scalping" into the brown area of the bermuda.

Over time I eventually learned that mowing hybrid Bermuda (not sure what yours is) it initially seems better to mow high, because it's greener and initially harder to have 'scalping" spots. But it can come back to bite you as over time the brown stems get higher and higher and you're left with a grass plant that is 3" of stems and 1/2" of green tops. That means you are very vulnerable to flaws in the cut and get scalp marks with bigger decks. Cutting it low light reaches all the way to the soil and most of the plant stays green, not brown, so it is much more forgiving of flaws in the cut. This allows a bigger deck size to be used.

You might want to experiment with a single lawn next season and try cutting it to 1" the first time, then cut at 1.25" as long as possible, upping it .25" if growth gets too fast to keep up. Even common Bermuda can be cut at that height if it's otherwise healthy. In our area that's expected on high end homes, probably due to their owners spending so much time on golf courses and seeing tifway bermuda mowed low. I realize there the custom may be to cut it tall.

If "at the corners" you meant that you are getting scalping at the bottom of the slope, sometimes that can be due to approaching that area at the wrong angle. If you're seeing it when you zero turn it can help to "wheelie" the deck up an inch or so if trying to zero turn at the crest of a hill in a bad spot. It also helps to always keep that trim side in mind when mowing, so that you never have the edge of the deck lower than the caster wheel on that side. With time you learn to modify the pattern according to the ground layout. This is where a rider actually does better in some cases, as you can use the deck pedal to lift the deck when needed to avoid scalping in tight turns.

I realize some small Bermuda lawns definitely look better mowed with a 21", but in my opinion this lawn, at least the parts that are up front, is actually one where the TT (36 or 48) would get the job done nicely too. 5 min is 5 min, but over time that adds up. If you did this with every lawn you'd be leaving maybe $50/day on the table. It also means you're adding fatigue and wear/tear on your body that you might avoid otherwise. That might allow you to work another half hour a day, yielding another $35 or so.

And get a straight shaft trimmer, preferably with an Edgit on it, it's much easier than trying to keep a curved shaft in control. You will be edging as fast as you can walk, no kidding.

As for less wheel marks with a 21", some of the new Toro and Exmark commercials may have wider tires than the residential units you're using now. But stick to the lighter models, as the heavy ones would negate that.

intimidator782
10-01-2010, 10:50 PM
Those edges are beautiful. I was wondering how i can get that look. Right now i am using a husqvarna edger but was wondering if a stihl or echo would do any better. I wouldnt think it would but im not sure. The edges mine leaves look good. But they do not look as good as those.

RadiantLawnCare
10-01-2010, 11:47 PM
you dont always have to stripe a lawn to make it look good, all these guys talking about striping are the ones who probably follow in the same path over and over again and which is not good. keep up the good work the grass looks very healthy and i would worry about the tire marks.

THEGOLDPRO
10-02-2010, 01:39 AM
you dont always have to stripe a lawn to make it look good, all these guys talking about striping are the ones who probably follow in the same path over and over again and which is not good. keep up the good work the grass looks very healthy and i would worry about the tire marks.

your just jelious you cant stripe

4CORNERS
10-08-2010, 06:42 PM
I agree with 95Z71....we reel mow 95 percent of our Bermuda. Unless you start cutting at the length that Bermuda is supposed to be cut, the wheel marks are there to stay. With that said, it doesn't look horrible.

4CORNERS
10-08-2010, 07:14 PM
...and you spelled jealous wrong!

ed2hess
10-08-2010, 10:44 PM
That yard looks just great and the most important thing is the customer likes it. Forget about all this nonsense of pulling pipes across the lawn those wheel marks are okay.