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  #1  
Old 01-18-2008, 08:35 PM
rmmllc rmmllc is offline
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cost per 1000 sf

I am just getting into spraying this year- been in the cutting side for 6 years now. I was calculating the cost per 1000 sf today and came out to about $4.10. That is with pre-m, and momentum (herbicide), so less in the later apps. (that was pot ash, urea, iron, pre-m, and broad leaf herbicide) Does that sound about right? I know it is probably somewhat regional, but I was wondering what you guys figured. Then do you price the application via square footage, of coarse with a minimum price just to get there and do it?
How many use merit or something like it (a systemic) for pest control? How often is it applied?
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  #2  
Old 01-18-2008, 09:01 PM
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RigglePLC RigglePLC is offline
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price per m

Back in the 80's when I worked for Tru Green--we charged something like 16.00 base fee, plus Msqft times 2.60.

Seven thousand sqft was about 7 times 2.60 plus 16.00 or about 34.20. I think the chemicals cost about 50 cents. Crabgrass control round, about 80 cents.

I suggest you try to get your chemicals for about an average cost of about 1.85 per M. Charge about three times that per Msqft, for labor and chemicals and charge about 20 to 25 dollars for the trip and overhead cost.
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  #3  
Old 01-21-2008, 09:17 PM
PHS PHS is offline
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rm,

I'll just toss out another idea for you that may help. For the guys who are only in the lawn application business they're probably more comfortable doing everything on a price/sq ft basis and they are doing enough of it to have accurate numbers. Lawn IPM is just one service that I offer so for me it 's little easier to do my estimating based on time since my other services are based on time also.

So basically I know what my material costs are per Msqft and I decide how long it's going to take plus whatever for driving time to the property. Add the two together and I have a price. All of my overhead and profit is figured into my rate per hour already so that's why I use it. If you estimate your other work on time that might work for you.
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Old 01-21-2008, 10:48 PM
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Whitey4 Whitey4 is offline
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Other than pre-M and spot spraying for weeds, I won't schedule any insect or fungus apps unless I find a good reason to use those controls. I don't think it's a good idea to use a product like Merit unless I can first identify a grub problem, and then know what type of grub I'm after, which has something to do with when is the best time to apply.

Grubs that have overwintered are much harder to kill. The younger larvae which start feeding in August are easiest to kill. The threshold level for grub apps also depends on how healthy the turf is. In weak turf, 4 or 5 grubs is enough to warrant something like Merit. Healthy turf can be almost non-affected by 5 grubs per Sq foot. Over, mis-timed or too frequent applications can make the population more pesticide resistant. My analogy... I never (or rarely) use the "F" word. When I DO, it packs a wallop!

I found my cost per 1k went down about 35% when I switched my supplier from Lesco to a local guy. $4/M sounds high to me. I can do a spring fert app, followed up with pendi for about $2.50 and that is with no volume discount. I plan to put my pre-m down later than my first feed.
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Old 01-21-2008, 11:00 PM
rmmllc rmmllc is offline
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Originally Posted by PHS View Post
rm,

I'll just toss out another idea for you that may help. For the guys who are only in the lawn application business they're probably more comfortable doing everything on a price/sq ft basis and they are doing enough of it to have accurate numbers. Lawn IPM is just one service that I offer so for me it 's little easier to do my estimating based on time since my other services are based on time also.

So basically I know what my material costs are per Msqft and I decide how long it's going to take plus whatever for driving time to the property. Add the two together and I have a price. All of my overhead and profit is figured into my rate per hour already so that's why I use it. If you estimate your other work on time that might work for you.
That's a good idea and probably easier for me to figure that way too. thanks for the input
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Old 01-21-2008, 11:03 PM
rmmllc rmmllc is offline
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Originally Posted by Whitey4 View Post
Other than pre-M and spot spraying for weeds, I won't schedule any insect or fungus apps unless I find a good reason to use those controls. I don't think it's a good idea to use a product like Merit unless I can first identify a grub problem, and then know what type of grub I'm after, which has something to do with when is the best time to apply.

Grubs that have overwintered are much harder to kill. The younger larvae which start feeding in August are easiest to kill. The threshold level for grub apps also depends on how healthy the turf is. In weak turf, 4 or 5 grubs is enough to warrant something like Merit. Healthy turf can be almost non-affected by 5 grubs per Sq foot. Over, mis-timed or too frequent applications can make the population more pesticide resistant. My analogy... I never (or rarely) use the "F" word. When I DO, it packs a wallop!

I found my cost per 1k went down about 35% when I switched my supplier from Lesco to a local guy. $4/M sounds high to me. I can do a spring fert app, followed up with pendi for about $2.50 and that is with no volume discount. I plan to put my pre-m down later than my first feed.
Thanks for the advice. Some clients (my dad for one) always has a grub problem in certain areas. Do you think I should come out of the gates shooting for those areas, or wait until a problem manifests itself? I can see where overuse can cause problems, so I will do as you advise. As far as a supplier, what kind of local shops carry pesticides (what should I look up in the yellow pages?) The guys at lesco are helpful, but they don't have to be my exclusive supplier.
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Old 01-21-2008, 11:35 PM
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Whitey4 Whitey4 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmmllc View Post
Thanks for the advice. Some clients (my dad for one) always has a grub problem in certain areas. Do you think I should come out of the gates shooting for those areas, or wait until a problem manifests itself? I can see where overuse can cause problems, so I will do as you advise. As far as a supplier, what kind of local shops carry pesticides (what should I look up in the yellow pages?) The guys at lesco are helpful, but they don't have to be my exclusive supplier.
Different story if you have a known problem... but still, I think it's a good idea to cut the turf on three sides, roll it up and take a count. (1 sq ft). It's a good idea to look at one of the lil buggers and figure out what type it is. Your co-op can provide pics to help identify which grub it is. Milky spore will knock the H outta Japanese beetles, but do nothing for the european chafer or oriental beetle.

The JB's around here aren't very bad. It's the EC's and to a lesser extent, the OB. Do you remember what the adults looked like? They are much easier to ID. The EC's are a uniform light brown, and love to attach to window and door screens at night, attracted to the indoor lighting. The OR has an almost black wing cover, and a striped or banded brown/black thorax. Best time to treat is when the larvae just hatches... late August, before they over winter.

Spring apps won't be as effective for long term control. These are mature larvae, and much tougher to kill.
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Old 01-22-2008, 12:19 AM
rmmllc rmmllc is offline
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My dad did his own lawn last year (he likes to), so I will try to help him ID the bugs this spring. I'm just getting into spray apps and fertilizing, so all this is really good info. Thanks for sharing. I do see from what you say that you must ID the bug to know what to do to it and when to treat.
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  #9  
Old 01-22-2008, 01:17 AM
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Whitey4 Whitey4 is offline
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Just another comment... the when to treat could be very different in Utah. Check out you local cooperative extension. They usually have these little inexpensive handbooks loaded with info (and pictures) that is directed at your location. The common pests in NY are going to be different than what you have out west.
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Old 01-22-2008, 09:06 AM
PHS PHS is offline
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Quote:
That's a good idea and probably easier for me to figure that way too. thanks for the input
.

I'll just add one thing to that, when I do come up with a price that way I know pretty well what the regular lawn applicators would charge for a similar treatment so I'm kinda double checking it with their ballpark price to make sure I'm still competitive.
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