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Old 05-04-2010, 09:05 AM
Marcos Marcos is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Cincinnati OH
Posts: 3,756
Originally Posted by jvanvliet View Post
Florida is considering restrictions on the unlimited application of nitrogen. I find a good granular slow release 2 x per year is adequate and if I want the grass to really green up PDQ; apply a sprayable organic iron. Monthly is insane, but these guys have to show up every month and do something cause they have a maintenace contract like you do.

I try and build a relationship with my L&O guy to reduce the nitrogen, in exchange, I try and direct him some add on business like white fly treatment or grubs & mole crickets... stuff like that. Works pretty good but like always, some guys are just a-holes. They spray too much and it's your problem to clean it up, or not enough and it's your fault the grass isn't green enough.
You've got the right idea, j!
But if other contractors have sites that have various LCOs, sometimes it can get very tough to communicate.

As a organic-bridge LCO, I've found one effective way to get things done is to channel requests thru the customer themselves.
For example, sidewalk edges tend to get the most weeds, particularly by late summer, right?
On sites that have had a history of this, if I don't know who the mowing contractor's going to be for that given year, I'll ask the customer to see to it that the sidewalk / driveway edges are done before our early spring application of corn gluten or Dimension along these edges.
I'll explain that this is important because the 'edge soil' should be pretty much left alone for the remainder of the season, or else crabgrass, spurge, purslane etc will be likely to encroach, regardless of what kind or brand of pre emergent applied.
From that point on until the end of the season, only string trimmers are to be used to edge, mimicking the height of the rest of the lawn as much as possible.
I've found that most clients are willing to take on the task of communication in this way, as long as the line of communication is open to both parties & they know the positive end-result will ultimately be to their own.

It can work the other way, too.
If you & the client agree there's little reason for copius amounts of N at a given time of the year & you can't get in contact with the LCO yourself, have the client talk to the LCO about using less N & maybe more iron, or organics.
If the client isn't astudt enough in the language of the biz, pass a note through the customer with your request.
Both of you are working for the same person & not directly competing with each other.
It's only logical that you'd want to work together as much as possible to do what's right for that customer.
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Old 05-04-2010, 09:05 AM
K-OS K-OS is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Montreal, Quebec
Posts: 115
IMO liquid fertilizers should be banned, too much runoff into our water streams. I think people are abusing the use of Nitrogen and it goes to show how much humans value what looks good as opposed to what IS good.

You can apply slow-release every 2 months in small quantities, with about 20% Nitrogen and get great results. But you can't stop there, just because it's green doesn't mean it's healthy. Micro nutrients play a big role and customers don't care because there isn't that instant WOW.

They should restrict fertilizers to licensed applicators, and limit the amount of Nitrogen.

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Old 05-04-2010, 09:47 AM
MikeKle MikeKle is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Northern KY
Posts: 4,254
I am in the same boat! I was planning to get out early today and get a full day in, but it rained again last night and everything is soaked again plus it rained non stop all last weekend. So I didnt get out at all. My yards are looking like crap and are wet and tall, Oh well, just cut when you can and if they dont understand, tell them to get someone else. Thats all we can really do, you cant really mow when it is soaking wet, it will look worse than being super tall.
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