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  #1  
Old 01-04-2005, 05:46 PM
Five Diamond Lawns Five Diamond Lawns is offline
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Top Dressing lawns on a large scale

I realize by looking through the past posts that this subject gets covered a lot in the organic gardening section, but there seem to be a lot of people pretty knowledgeable about it, so here's my question.

I want to start offering, on a big scale, top dressing for residential lawns. I'm thinking of having my topsoil distributer mix up a special mix with topsoil, compost and seed together, then top dressing lawns with 2 - 6 yards of the mix. I will do lawns of any size but I think the 2 - 6 yards will be my bread and butter.
What I'm looking for is your ideas and experiences on
- the best delivery method from start to finish
- pricing


My thoughts so far are a small dump truck with a custom back end to dump into a motorized compost spreader ( I've found a lot of info on spreaders in past posts ). This way I'll only need one person to do the work and not much shoveling. I think he could spread 3 yards an hour on site. I am looking at $69 per yard.
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Old 01-04-2005, 05:56 PM
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mtdman mtdman is offline
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Sounds good. I am still not satisfied that an affordable small topdresser has been built on the market for use on residential lawns.
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Old 01-04-2005, 07:01 PM
Cutters Lawn Care Cutters Lawn Care is offline
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I sub out this type of work. There is a company that uses blower trucks for this type job. I don't know about the size of lawns in Olympia but here 3-6 yards won't get you far. They blow in 2 inches of topsoil and compost and charge 8 cents per sq ft. I charge customer 11 cents per sq foot. Average lawn here uses about 20 yards.
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Old 01-04-2005, 07:04 PM
shaughnessylawn shaughnessylawn is offline
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you guys have any pics of the jobs done like this and equipment
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  #5  
Old 01-04-2005, 07:06 PM
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coastallandscapesolutions coastallandscapesolutions is offline
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If any of you are near a Lesco and if they are like ours, then they may have a top dresser that you can use. Ours has one that they loan out to golf courses and we have used it a couple of times over the years. Just a thought.
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Old 01-04-2005, 07:22 PM
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mtdman mtdman is offline
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I asked my lesco guy about it last year and he didn't know what I was talking about. Additionally, you can't always use one of the big top dressers that golf courses use on a residential lawn. Most of my lawns are too small and obstructed to get one of those things in it.
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  #7  
Old 01-05-2005, 01:02 AM
gogetter gogetter is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cutters Lawn Care
There is a company that uses blower trucks for this type job. They blow in 2 inches of topsoil and compost and
2" for just topdressing? Seems like a lot. My understanding was that topdressing was just a very thin layer (like in the 1/4" - 1/2" range).

And just incase anyone was interested and hadn't seen the other thread on this, here's a new topdresser that came our recently:

www.topdresser.ca
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Old 01-05-2005, 07:41 AM
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65hoss 65hoss is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Five Diamond Lawns
I think he could spread 3 yards an hour on site. I am looking at $69 per yard.
Too cheap. You need a set minimum price and a pricing structure based on SF breaks. Smaller sf lawns will actually take longer due to operating in a confined space. Thus the price for smaller lawns will be higher in relation to the sf of larger lawns. Look at it this way, the larger lawns get a sf price break for volume in a way. They still pay more than small ones, but the price per sf is lower on larger areas.
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Old 01-05-2005, 10:41 AM
Five Diamond Lawns Five Diamond Lawns is offline
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Great comments!
I have looked into the blower idea but came up with a couple snags. First It would require 2 people on site. The only affordable one I could find is like a cement mixer and needs to be loaded by hand. Second everything I have read says you need do rake it after blowing. Third even the cheep ones ain't cheep. There too expensive to do small residential lawns.
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Old 01-05-2005, 01:54 PM
Five Diamond Lawns Five Diamond Lawns is offline
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The motorized top dressers are from $3800 to $6000
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