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1st Lawn Account ever - since 1988

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by mdvaden, May 25, 2013.

  1. mdvaden

    mdvaden LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,944

    Starting back in 1988, 5 years on golf courses had me dodging lawn accounts. Around 1986 I was a crew leader for a commercial maintenance company, but following 1988, I just stuck to pruning, planting, landscaping changes, etc.. No monthly maintenance.

    The place below, started with a tree planting issue, which I will post a pic of later. I posted this in starting, because this start in landscape maintenance stems from incorrect tree care, failure to prune foliage, and incorrect placement of sprinkler heads.

    The basics are:

    16,000 square feet of lawn.
    About 1/3 acre of shrub bed area
    A big berm that needs a few hours of weed whacking a few times per year.
    Some minor pruning to 400 newly planted trees and shrubs
    2.8 acres among the field habitat area that need rough mowing 2 times yearly
    General weed control stuff, and minor sprinkler adjustments.

    Purchased 2 Exmark 30" commercial mowers, and 1 Exmark 21" commercial mower.






  2. mdvaden

    mdvaden LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,944

    So, I stepped foot on this property with a paid arborist consultation. For most of 400 trees on the property, the twine had not been cut. The sisal twine was like quadruple wrapped and restricted a year's growth on some trunks. Girdled roots were not spotted previously, due to the burlap remaining. Many of the biggest trees, 8' to 10' Incense Cedar, had synthetic twine, embedding into the trunk.

    Also some boxwoods were drying or dying. So I asked to check the irrigation and found some heads were plugged, a couple not working, some blocked by foliage that should have been pruned, and some heads were up against root balls, preventing 90 degree heads from reaching plants to the left and the right.

    Ooooohhhh ... also ... virtually nothing was mulched. Not the trees in the field area, the landscaping, etc.. What you see in my photos, is the result of 140 cubic yards of bark I recommended recently.


  3. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 17,002

    Hope you do real good on your new adventure, Ive sure enjoyed your pics of the big trees.
  4. GVL LLC

    GVL LLC LawnSite Member
    Posts: 154

    wow whatever firm installed that plant material are a bunch of crooks or they have no clue how to install plant material properly. I always cut off all twine synthetic or not and always remove as much burlap as possible. This seems like it was a get the work done as fast as possible job and then take the money and run. Hopefully the plant material will rebound once the issues are taken care of.
  5. mdvaden

    mdvaden LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,944

    It's remarkable how even just the bark mulch has helped already.

    I started doing some stuff there in just the past couple of months or so. We had a week to two week fairly dry spell back in March or early April, and a lot of the trees were already sort of stressing and yellowing. Should never have been so this early in the year.

    After the mulch was applied, the color of the trees started improving all over the property. But there are premature cones on quite a few trees. But there are very few yellow evergreens presently.
  6. mdvaden

    mdvaden LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,944

    So ......

    Almost one year since the first consultation that led to taking-on the maintenance here.

    And not one tree lost since I've been working there. Lawn looks okay, but I won't brag about grass care ... it's not my long-suit. Surprisingly, the best looking lawn in winter is the lesser of the soils on the property. Maybe due to being the most elevated and not a lot of rain this winter.

    Someone else mowed the field and tractor work. I've got the main landscape, field trees and nature trail.



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