View Full Version : Sweet gum balls...

03-19-2004, 10:59 PM
Guys, I have a man who wants the sweet gum balls in his backyard removed. Anyone have any experience with these? Best to rake 'em, blow 'em or mow over 'em first? I know this is wide open for jokes so if you must...go ahead! LOL

03-19-2004, 11:08 PM
Well....if you mow over them you're gonna just shoot them all over the place.

Raking requires work, I know no body wants to do that.

I advise to blow em on a tarp and haul off.

03-19-2004, 11:14 PM
Thanks. I was wondering about mowing since it makes sense if the grass is shorter, they'd be easier to blow onto a tarp. Never really dealt with 'em before other than stepping on 'em when I'm barefooted. Ouch!

03-19-2004, 11:47 PM
i have lots more experience with sweet gum balls than i'd like to have...the problem is a blower just pushes them further downinto the turf alot of times...if its not too big an area i suggest raking (ugh) if its big just use a blower (a strong one), and do the best you can...no way to do it with a mower though.

03-20-2004, 12:14 AM
This is definately a rake project! Never fun stuff, but in the long run it may pay off! Customers remember these things and it helps develop that loyalty that we all seek.

03-20-2004, 01:52 AM
A mower will push them into the ground and you may never get them up. Rake the lawn and sell them on tree injections for next year.

03-20-2004, 02:07 AM
get raking


03-20-2004, 08:13 AM
I've used my Shindaiwa PowerBroom or a backpack blower or both to put them into piles and then haul them away. I think the biggest Echo, Red Max, or Shindaiwa blower works best.

03-20-2004, 09:53 AM
I use the blower to get them into piles, then rake em or put them in buckets. You could use the mower with the chute up if you want to chase away some pesky kids or the neighbors.:D

03-20-2004, 11:30 AM
on second thought i think i would just fire up the 036pro and lay that tree down gum trees are ugly smelly trees anyway

03-20-2004, 03:42 PM
I use a vaccum and a rake to pick these babies up. My Billy Goat did not do a very good job, but the mtd units seem to do well for me. You might go to Home Depot or Lowes and buy one to try out. If you are not satisfied, return it. Also, some of these units have small chippers which come in handy too. Hope this helps.

03-20-2004, 03:45 PM
We got a customer who was complaining about the ball making a mess over the yard, We cut the tree down yesterday no problems now.

03-20-2004, 04:56 PM
If its a large area, use a push blower first, then rake up any of the remnants. Bottom line although many claim to never rake --- it is the only proven method for this mess.

03-20-2004, 05:36 PM
We have a lot of sweet gums aroung here also. My walker will suck some of them up, but to really get rid of them just strap the backpack blower on and they get out the rake and tarp. Have fun, we try to.

Barker's Lawn Care
03-20-2004, 06:24 PM
Ive done several gumball clean-ups. The best time is late fall, winter, or early spring. The grass is still dormant and very short. This way you dont have to mow over them while cutting downt the grass and press them ever farther in the ground. I use a Stihl br320 backpack to blow them into piles, any other commercial blower should do fine. Next, I have a Trac-Vac on my walkbehind....I take the Trac Vac hose off the mower and rake the gumballs into the chute. This works very well, and you never have to touch them. A pic of the trac vac...

03-20-2004, 08:28 PM
I've done this many times. I use my Little Wonder Blower, angle the discharge down, and walk forward then pull backward across the area. You can only move over about 2-3 feet each time, but it will blow them into a row which you can easily rake into a pile and pick up.

03-20-2004, 08:56 PM
Those things take more time than you think so don't under bid the job . When I have them in a pile my big plastic mulch shovel really comes in handy to get them on the tarp . I tried running them over with the Walker but I smashed just as many in the ground as it got up . Can anybody tell me about how much the tree injections are I might be willing to try something new next year ?

03-20-2004, 10:29 PM
What type of tree injections are y'all talking about? Do these do away with the gum balls? This maybe a very good selling point!

03-21-2004, 09:12 AM
You need to be linsenced for tree applications. Here is some info http://www.treetech.net/snipper.htm

03-21-2004, 09:44 AM
I guess it would help if I gave you the product info :) Also, that last link should have been this one http://www.southernillinoisan.com/rednews/2003/04/06/build/business/BIZ001.html

The company name is Tree Tech. They sell the monoinjectors by the case of 100 units. A case of the Snipper cost $326.00 and they sell a self study guide for $35.00 also.

The tree should be measured at shoulder height. it takes one injection every four inches (a 40" tree would take 10 injections). The drilling is done just a couple of inches from the ground (not shoulder height)

e-mail: info@treetech.net

phone: (352) 528-5335

03-21-2004, 09:57 AM
Talking about hurt I was wearing shorts yesterday and I hit a sweet gum ball with the weed eater and it shot up and hit my leg hurt like crap