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PL&L
10-01-2011, 03:51 PM
i want to start offering these services. does anyone use organic weed control? what do you use? how well does it work?

also organic fertilizing.. what do you guys use?

any feedback welcome!

Smallaxe
10-01-2011, 04:56 PM
No good weed control that is marketable to customers... If peple make claims then use them yourself until you see exactly how well they do or don't work... IPM, is as 'green' as you can get and still be successful...

I use compost and Milorganite, but so far only in limitted amounts... people, around here, still want the cheap stuff as well... :)

phasthound
10-01-2011, 06:11 PM
Organic weed control is based on preventing as many weeds as possible with good cultural methods such as mowing high, proper irrigation, over seeding with the best seed for the location. These methods will help crowd out weeds with a dense turf.

Corn gluten can be used as a pre-emergent for annual weeds such as crabgrass. There are non-selective organic weed killers for non-turf areas. At present, there is no organic selective post emergent weed control. Well, except hand pulling and filling bare spot with compost and seed.

This doesn't mean it can't be done. Last week I met the groundskeeper of a private estate that converted about 25 acres of well maintained turf from conventional to organic this year. The results were much better than I would have expected.

They used 4 semi-loads of compost, learned how to brew compost tea, hand pulled weeds and also used Fiesta Weed Killer (which is considered natural, but not organic). The initial investment was expensive, but they already reduced their irrigation and mowing budget significantly in the first year.

Organics is not just about switching products, it is also an understanding of how to work with a natural system. A key factor is that your clients must understand that a pure organic program is a process that takes time. They must accept that there will always be some weeds. A few weeds does not rule out a beautiful lawn.

phasthound
10-02-2011, 09:57 AM
This article just popped up. I was wrong about the acreage, it's 16 not 25.
http://www.enewspf.com/latest-news/science-a-environmental/27348-landscape-sustainability-examples-in-three-states.html

PL&L
10-02-2011, 03:08 PM
i think i will give fiesta a shot. i just wanted something that is more safe for us (the workers) health to put down as well as the animals and homeowners. im going into complete property maintenance which is why i am weighing the options. thanks for the insight!

Kiril
10-02-2011, 11:07 PM
but they already reduced their irrigation and mowing budget significantly in the first year.

I would like to point out this could have been done by simply irrigating properly.

phasthound
10-03-2011, 07:40 AM
I would like to point out this could have been done by simply irrigating properly.

I have no first hand knowledge of what the irrigation methodology was on this site. I do have first hand experience that replacing salt based fertilizer with compost and compost tea have dramatically reduced irrigation requirements.

phasthound
10-03-2011, 07:44 AM
i think i will give fiesta a shot. i just wanted something that is more safe for us (the workers) health to put down as well as the animals and homeowners. im going into complete property maintenance which is why i am weighing the options. thanks for the insight!

Safety and the lack of negative environmental impacts are what sets Fiesta Weed Killer apart from chemical weed control.

ICT Bill
10-03-2011, 08:04 AM
I agree with Barry on the change in your own thinking and what your goals are. The change in cultural practices is key and implementing them in your company.

it is my understanding, and I may be wrong because I have never used it, that fiesta is great on broadleaf weeds but does little to nothing for grab grass

Kiril
10-03-2011, 09:26 AM
I do have first hand experience that replacing salt based fertilizer with compost and compost tea have dramatically reduced irrigation requirements.

I agree, but I have my doubts on any significant decrease in a single year.

phasthound
10-03-2011, 01:31 PM
I agree, but I have my doubts on any significant decrease in a single year.

It has been a wet year in the Mid-Adlantic and I'm sure
adjustments were made to the irrigation protocol as any good turf program is a systems approach which goes beyond just changing products.