I have to agree reading these post that this is going to be a learning experience. I price fixed rates for clients but I have the experience to do so. I don't think the OP has that so hourly would be better. Risk with hourly if you can't give the client at least a good idea of how long it will take. They could freak out if it takes a lot longer than they think it should.
Personally I don't believe from comments he is suited for this job as he does not seem to know exact what to do. First off a client may ask for something but as a professional you should be able to recommend the best ways to do things. First off ripping out all the soil seems VERY extreme. I have done it in extreme cases but most f the time all they need is the beds tilled and amended with compost and topsoil.
Just remember every job is your reputation, the client tells friends about the job and one friend knows little more about landscaping. He could tell your client that you should of just amended the beds. Even though you were asked by the client to rip out all the soil, all suddenly he is telling people that you didn't know what you were doing and ripped him off. The client also will not tell anyone he asked you to do something stupid. As the landscaper you are the knowledgeable professional. Not to be that jerk but I think you are way over your head on this job. It could turn out OK of course but this could just as easily be a disaster for you for even more reasons
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