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ProMaintenance
04-29-2011, 09:44 PM
Iím just curious if you guys pull weeds, I got two spring clean up jobs this week that mostly involved pulling weeds and both customers said they were told by multiple LCOs that they didnít do weeding. In addition have done a few clean ups on properties that are otherwise maintained by a different LCO. Maybe Iím just naive and there really is a lot of mow blow and go companies out there. Donít get me wrong pulling weeds sucks but I feel I charge fairly high for the service and it is a good way to make quick money. So I guess I was wondering what your view on the matter is.

NPMinc
04-29-2011, 09:50 PM
Wow! How the hell do you do a "cleanup" without pulling weeds? They are leaving some serious money on the table! Yes weeding sucks, but charge accordingly and it is quite worth it! All factors and overhead considered, Mowing is probably the least profitable per man hour activity there is in this field so I don't know how thats all they can do.

Florida Gardener
04-29-2011, 09:53 PM
How do you call yourself an lco and not do weed control?? Those will be the same guys that complain they get lowballed when in all reality they aren't giving the customer what they want...
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greendoctor
04-29-2011, 09:58 PM
The correct pre and post emergent herbicides. That is one of my selling points. I maintain areas planted to shrubs, flowers and groundcover without pulling weeds on a regular basis. Maybe once for weeds too large to spray, but never instead of a comprehensive weed control program.

NPMinc
04-29-2011, 10:19 PM
The correct pre and post emergent herbicides. That is one of my selling points. I maintain areas planted to shrubs, flowers and groundcover without pulling weeds on a regular basis. Maybe once for weeds too large to spray, but never instead of a comprehensive weed control program.

Understand that but I was more referring to new customers. Also there are plenty who wont pay for spray etc.

greendoctor
04-29-2011, 10:26 PM
It is the bad cases of widespread weeds that begs for a combination program of pre and post. As for the ones who will not pay and expect the weeds to be pulled out over and over again throughout the growing season....................I do not want their money or their business.

Florida Gardener
04-29-2011, 10:31 PM
Green is there a post for broadleafs that can be applied over the top??
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ProMaintenance
04-29-2011, 10:40 PM
I look at as if someone wants me to pull weeds over and over again i have no issues billing them over and over again to pull the weeds. There are plenty of days here in Oregon when the rain makes mowing not an option. Shoot if a customer wants a pile of rocks moved from one end of their property to the other every other week I will do it. I guess what im saying is I don't mind the work and if the customer can pay me what i want then everyone wins.

greendoctor
04-29-2011, 10:42 PM
Wick applications of RoundUp. Basagran, Certainty, Image, or Lontrel in tolerant plantings and do not forget what Ronstar WP or Flo will do to many broadleaves. I have found that many target weeds are still sensitive to sprayed Ronstar even if enough irrigation has been applied to wash off material from desirable plants.

RoundUp applied to the green basal portion of tall broadleaves as a 5% solution avoiding contact with shrubs is also effective.

ProMaintenance
04-29-2011, 10:49 PM
Wow! How the hell do you do a "cleanup" without pulling weeds? They are leaving some serious money on the table! Yes weeding sucks, but charge accordingly and it is quite worth it! All factors and overhead considered, Mowing is probably the least profitable per man hour activity there is in this field so I don't know how thats all they can do.

I couldn't agree more, the whole reason I mow lawns is access to more customers for the spring/ fall clean ups, pruning and tree work. I always look at the trees when i make a mowing bid, the customer is happy and feels like they got a good deal on the mowing and im happy knowing that come fall im going to more than make up the difference

NPMinc
04-29-2011, 11:04 PM
I look at as if someone wants me to pull weeds over and over again i have no issues billing them over and over again to pull the weeds. There are plenty of days here in Oregon when the rain makes mowing not an option. Shoot if a customer wants a pile of rocks moved from one end of their property to the other every other week I will do it. I guess what im saying is I don't mind the work and if the customer can pay me what i want then everyone wins.

Amen to that!!! If the customer is willing to pay what I am charging and I am qualified and insured and have room in my schedule to do it, I will be glad to do whatever they want done!

nativeCO
04-29-2011, 11:34 PM
Yes weeding is essential. I also offer weeding as part of a weekly maintenence deal. Pull a few weeds everytime you come to mow, charge an extra $5. Everyone's happy

MR-G
04-29-2011, 11:47 PM
yes we will pull weeds...but we dont like to and heres why...we have very tight routes all 1/4 ac.lots, we get a min. of 25.00 per cut for just the mowing,trimming,edging and blowdown of the lawn...and we do them in under 10 minutes each (inc. travel time) on a good day we can do 6-8 per hr... (crew of 3) were taking in 200.00 per hr. on a good running day...we have not been able to find ANY clients willing to pay 200.00 per hr for pulling weeds....our min for weed pulling is at 95.00 per hr...and we dont get many of them either...truth is the basic mowing services are high volume yes but, done right can be very lucrative......:usflag:

ProMaintenance
04-30-2011, 12:00 AM
@MR-G Thats awesome, I can deferentially see your point. I love the weeding now due to mostly working solo so I get huge margins with the weeding for little physical exertion. However my margins would be gone with a large crew like yours.

Dr.NewEarth
04-30-2011, 12:02 AM
I find alot of times, that if you know your weeds you can deal with them easier.

Once you have pulled the weeds and tidied up the garden, it is so easy to manage them each week.

Some gardens will be a constant problem but generally once you've cleaned,
then the following weeks throughout the season if a weed is there, either
walk past and pull it out quickly and throw it on the lawn before you cut
or alot of the small annual weeds can be discreetly wacked back with the
line trimmer as you do the edges.

What you do depends on how high profile the area is and how much the client
expects or is willing to pay for the total package.

In the weeks after you have tidied up the garden, I find it works best not to disturb
too much soil when you pull out any new weeds.

There can be literally thousands of dormant weed seeds in a handful of soil.
Yet only a few germinate. The ones that do germinate send a signal to the
others telling them to stay dormant.

In theory, if you disturb the soil too much, then you could wake up the dormant seeds

Most of the cities around Vancouver have cosmetic pesticide bans.
What we can't pull we can only spray with eco-friendly products like iron based
Fiesta and Eco sense. We also use vinegars, soaps and burners.
I think the iron stuff works with the least problems.
I recommend two applications during a dry period.

2,4-D products work great on most weeds and if used properly won't harm any grass or
most plants. If you're using this or a weed and feed on your lawns, stay away from clematis. They're in the same family as creeping buttercup and you will kill them!

I really think that people should get away from suggesting others use
Round-up so much. It's spray drift will kill any plant in the garden.
Also, always read the directions and use your safety gear.
It has to be around 70 ferenhieit/18 celcius for a few days for that stuff to
work properly anyways.

It takes less time to pull a weed or clump of grass in the garden, rather than spray with round-up and wait two or three weeks for it to decompose.
Frankly, when I see this done on properties it looks amateur.

MR-G
04-30-2011, 12:16 AM
@MR-G Thats awesome, I can deferentially see your point. I love the weeding now due to mostly working solo so I get huge margins with the weeding for little physical exertion. However my margins would be gone with a large crew like yours.believe it or not i miss the days i could go out by myself and pull weeds for 40-50 per hr and not have to deal with the headaches of a larger operation..nevertheless i am where i am and make the most of it...truth is 3 crews of 3 is a little more than i was looking for..lol....but its all good:usflag:

ProMaintenance
04-30-2011, 01:42 AM
Most of the cities around Vancouver have cosmetic pesticide bans.
What we can't pull we can only spray with eco-friendly products like iron based
Fiesta and Eco sense. We also use vinegars, soaps and burners.
I think the iron stuff works with the least problems.
I recommend two applications during a dry period.




What is the % of acetic acid is the vinegars that you use. I am wondering because the only two that are registered for use as a herbicide in oregon are around 6% and 7%. According to Oregon State University Extension you want at least 10% and preferably higher. I was wondering if you could shed any light on this.

Dr.NewEarth
04-30-2011, 02:34 PM
What is the % of acetic acid is the vinegars that you use. I am wondering because the only two that are registered for use as a herbicide in oregon are around 6% and 7%. According to Oregon State University Extension you want at least 10% and preferably higher. I was wondering if you could shed any light on this.

Oh you bum...ha ha. I had to pull out a conversion table to figure this out.
I'm in western Canada.

Any-ways it was in grams of acedic acid per litre

It works out to 6% of acedic acid, which I understand is 3 or 4 times stronger than kitchen vinegar.

It was suggested to me off the cuff, that if I wanted a higher concentration
of vinegar, I should boil it on the stove for a while.

The wholesaler says their horticultural vinegar has a Yucca based wetting agent and no other additives. I guess that means Yucca water.

I have found that the vinegars work alright for spraying cracks in driveways and walkways. You have to do a few repeat performances over the following weeks though. Some things won't go away

If some-one hasn't used this before, it will burn the plants so be careful.

As for weeds, vinegars seemed to burn their leaves but then the next week
they will have bolted again, instead of being dead. It was like a weed revolt. They wanted to propenciate their species. It didn't appear to do such a great job in the garden where I had huge patches of chick weed for instance. Perhaps I should have soaked it better?
It was more cost effective and better looking to just pull the weeds.

I have tried the acedic acid solutions on perennial and annual weeds.
I am not thrilled about the overall results. It doesn't seem to get into the
vascular system of the weed or kill their roots.

On grasses as with weeds, it only kills the grass blades and doesn't get down below the vascular meristem at ground level. You do as much good cropping down grass in the sidewalks with a weed eater. It grows back.
You're better to pull grass clumps out by hand, or dig it out some-how.

Guys and Gals, don't get this stuff on your skin. You'll find out where the smallest scratch is very quickly.

Acedic acid tends to cause leaks in the sprayer seals

At least people can smell it and they know you're using vinegar
as a "control" measure.

It could be used as part of a selling point for an eco-friendly landscape maintenance program.

Burners work about the same as the acedic acids. Plus with them you
need to have water with you or you have to stamp out little fires with your
feet. They are like a mini tiger torch.

There are other burners that use a heated element instead of an open flame. I can direct people to a distributor up here if they want one of these.
They come from Holland I believe.

I achieve better results with Fiesta Iron sprays for weed control

I liked 2,4-D based products as they are selective and tended to work well on the weeds. You know, one spray and you don't have to bother again.

I used to use round-up when it was warm enough outside (70f./18c.)
It will kill any-thing and can drift in the wind to harm other plants.
Mostly it was used on the sidewalk cracks.
Watch out though, because a clump of grass may be attached
to your lawn area with a rhizome and you could end up with a dead patch in the lawn if you use round-up.

Around here, most cities have pesticide bans. It means a bit more time and labour costs have to passed on to the clients.

vencops
04-30-2011, 05:14 PM
I look at as if someone wants me to pull weeds over and over again i have no issues billing them over and over again to pull the weeds. There are plenty of days here in Oregon when the rain makes mowing not an option. Shoot if a customer wants a pile of rocks moved from one end of their property to the other every other week I will do it. I guess what im saying is I don't mind the work and if the customer can pay me what i want then everyone wins.


Amen.

The list of things I WON'T do (for the right price) is short. I don't even list my services on my bus. cards; flyers; etc...

If a customer asks me - "Jeff, would you interested in cleaning out my horse barn"?

My answer will most always be - "Yes sir"

Every job has a price (in my world). And, I'm not above doing it (if I get my price).

The author of the above quote and I would get along just fine.

Georgia Lawn Works LLC
04-30-2011, 06:22 PM
The correct pre and post emergent herbicides. That is one of my selling points. I maintain areas planted to shrubs, flowers and groundcover without pulling weeds on a regular basis. Maybe once for weeds too large to spray, but never instead of a comprehensive weed control program.



Same here.

Georgia Lawn Works LLC
04-30-2011, 06:32 PM
Also there are plenty who wont pay for spray etc.


Spray is included in our price. And at less than 3.00 per gallon sprayable at a high rate of 41% glysophate it saves us lots of time and makes the customer happy.

Georgia Lawn Works LLC
04-30-2011, 06:47 PM
Spray is included in our price. And at less than 3.00 per gallon sprayable at a high rate of 41% glysophate it saves us lots of time and makes the customer happy.




Sorry. That should have been 30 cents per gallon sprayable not 3.00.


And even if you don't figure spraying your not going to be using more than a gallon on average per customer visit. So if you don't figure it in your only in the hole 30 cents.


Trust me it's worth it to spray even if you don't charge. It saves us so much time on our propertys.

ProMaintenance
04-30-2011, 09:45 PM
@Ddrnewearth thanks for all the info, I am trying to move to a more organic approach due to the Integrated Pest Management class I took at a Community College, it flipped everything I thought I new upside down. I have been having good results with a citrus oil based product from "Worry Free" but even buying it as a concentrate a one quart bottle only makes just under 1.5 gallons. I was thinking about adding a horticultural vinegar to the mix to stretch it out but cant find to much info on it

Florida Gardener
04-30-2011, 10:43 PM
Sorry. That should have been 30 cents per gallon sprayable not 3.00.


And even if you don't figure spraying your not going to be using more than a gallon on average per customer visit. So if you don't figure it in your only in the hole 30 cents.


Trust me it's worth it to spray even if you don't charge. It saves us so much time on our propertys.

Yea, material is cheap and then say about 10-15 min each time you spray depending on property size. In Florida, you really needy spray every 2 weeks in the growing seasonor weeds will be out of control..
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rowdiestang
05-01-2011, 05:36 PM
Comparing pulling weeds to spraying them is like comparing a wheel barrow and a shovel to a tractor! It is a whole lot more coast effective to spray them if you have all the correct liscenses to go with it, But then how can you have a ligitament lawn care company without it. You can spend 1 hour pulling weeds and never get all the roots so they will always come back and then I can spend about 10 minutes spraying every 2 weeks and not have to worry about them ever coming back. Put a pre-emergent down as well as a post emergent then you are just about weed free.

BlazerRidge
05-01-2011, 11:38 PM
Sorry. That should have been 30 cents per gallon sprayable not 3.00.


And even if you don't figure spraying your not going to be using more than a gallon on average per customer visit. So if you don't figure it in your only in the hole 30 cents.


Trust me it's worth it to spray even if you don't charge. It saves us so much time on our propertys.

What are you using that is that cheap? I'm around $1 per gallon

Georgia Lawn Works LLC
05-01-2011, 11:40 PM
Just 41% glysophate bought from my local ag supply. I think its their private label brand.
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Smallaxe
05-02-2011, 12:00 AM
Step over a dollar, to pick up a nickel... :)

Snyder's Lawn Inc
05-02-2011, 12:27 AM
Iím just curious if you guys pull weeds, I got two spring clean up jobs this week that mostly involved pulling weeds and both customers said they were told by multiple LCOs that they didnít do weeding. In addition have done a few clean ups on properties that are otherwise maintained by a different LCO. Maybe Iím just naive and there really is a lot of mow blow and go companies out there. Donít get me wrong pulling weeds sucks but I feel I charge fairly high for the service and it is a good way to make quick money. So I guess I was wondering what your view on the matter is.

Will I get out bidded on jobs like that all time
I'm the higher bidder. There lot time in pulling weeds. Other LCO cut corners if there mulch beds they will not pull just cover them up with new mulch
Myself if I know I have the job I 'll go 5 days before cleanup and spray Weed kill and then pull weeds that way the roots are died
There a Busines here I do the clean up every year and LCO does the mowing dont pull weeds just mow and i know you going ask why I dont mow well They are very cheap

Snyder's Lawn Inc
05-02-2011, 12:34 AM
Just 41% glysophate bought from my local ag supply. I think its their private label brand.
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Thats Gly4 if so yes its cheap
Round up calls for 4 onces that Gly4 Calls for 8 onces same Slurry mix
I hate that stuff I have better kill rate with Name brand stuff Roundup weather max

PLS-Tx
05-02-2011, 12:37 AM
yes oh course we pull weeks.

Roachy
05-02-2011, 03:20 AM
Just curious if you guys ever use preen on your beds and if it works well. Just tried it this week under some mulch layers, hopefully its works.

I also hate weeding, and even mulch sometimes. I find that I make the best consistent money with the least amount of work on my lawn cuts. I get a lawn done in a half hour by myself and charge $30. I also just walk around while my 52in does the work.

Maybe i underchage on mulch and weeding, but I find that I tend to make about $35-$40 an hour on mulch jobs and im working a lot harder than mowing. Just my thoughts

KINGMADE
05-02-2011, 04:20 AM
yes we will pull weeds...but we dont like to and heres why...we have very tight routes all 1/4 ac.lots, we get a min. of 25.00 per cut for just the mowing,trimming,edging and blowdown of the lawn...and we do them in under 10 minutes each (inc. travel time) on a good day we can do 6-8 per hr... (crew of 3) were taking in 200.00 per hr. on a good running day...we have not been able to find ANY clients willing to pay 200.00 per hr for pulling weeds....our min for weed pulling is at 95.00 per hr...and we dont get many of them either...truth is the basic mowing services are high volume yes but, done right can be very lucrative......:usflag:

8 per hour? Really. On 1/4th acre's. Those lawns must look great.

MR-G
05-02-2011, 08:14 AM
8 per hour? Really. On 1/4th acre's. Those lawns must look great.that they do....:):usflag:maybe just under a 1/4 ac....lol

Georgia Lawn Works LLC
05-02-2011, 03:52 PM
Thats Gly4 if so yes its cheap
Round up calls for 4 onces that Gly4 Calls for 8 onces same Slurry mix
I hate that stuff I have better kill rate with Name brand stuff Roundup weather max


Sorry, actually its from tractor supply. There having a sale on it again at 30 per 2.5 gallon jug. 41% glysophate with a surfacant is the same thing as round up. Minus the price tag.
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