Blowing leaves technique

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Doogiegh, Nov 15, 2002.

  1. Doogiegh

    Doogiegh LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 871

    Ok so you go into the backyard and it's covered in leaves. They have to be removed from the property, and it's a small gate?

    Do you have any particular blowing techniques that save time?

    I know some guys who start in one corner and "roll" the leaves like ocean waves and keep moving side to side across the entire width of the property, blowing all the leaves straight across the yard so they all wind up on one side, usually against a solid wall or fence.. from there they use the green barrel garbage cans, rake and shovel the leaves up using multiple cans and dump them in the trailer, and off to the next stop.

    Other run a lawn mower over the leaves, going in circles side-discharging or mulching forwards or backwards creating small particles. Then blow everything?

    Got any time proven techniques for when the leaves have to be removed? And you can't use a ZTR with a ultra vac or whatever (36" gate)?

  2. peck

    peck LawnSite Member
    Posts: 38

    I use big tarps. (12 by 20) Blow or rake the leaves into a pile and rake them onto the tarp. It is much easier than putting them into garbage bags. You will be able to take a much bigger load in a shorter amount of time. After you have reached full capicity on the tarp fold the ends and drag it away.
  3. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Posts: 3,256

    Gary, I use the first technique you mentioned. Only difference is I use a tarp rather then the barrels. I get them blown into a pile near the gate and set the tarp right on the other side of the gate.
    Then blow or rake them through the gate onto the tarp.

    Btw, when I use the rake at this point it's more of a plowing action as apposed to a raking action. I put the rake in front of my legs and sorta walk/push the pile onto the tarp. This is just for moving a high pile a short distance (couple feet) where the blower would be too much.

    Then to the curb where they get sucked up.
  4. KLMlawn

    KLMlawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 443

    Next option, take a hammer and remove a section of fence so you can either get a bigger machine into the back or have an easier time getting tarps out ....
    Sometime you have to think "outside" the box ...
  5. Harvestman

    Harvestman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 233

    I'll drape the tarp down the fence and on to the ground. I then weight it down with a 2 x 4 and blow as many leaves on it as I can. Repeat as often as needed (humor ar ar ). Harvestman

    LLMSERVICE LawnSite Member
    Posts: 96

    Depending on the size of the yard and the thickness of leaves, I'll either use the blower to clear around the perimeter of the property and use the bagger on my 21" Toro or if they are heavier, I'll use the blower to blow towards the gate, than use tarps and a rake.
  7. PaulJ

    PaulJ LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,776

    I do the samw on most leaves. If theres a gate I can't get the 36 through. the I use the 21. Blow out the beds and blow in from the edges a bit, then start mowing over them. Of course the bag fills up quickley, I just keep going, now I'm mulching. I just grind away at the leaves to reduce the volume. If they start to pile up in front of the mower I raise the front of the deck to suck them in. Did half a yard the other day with the front of my 36 in the air. When the leaves are ground down to a smaller amount, then I dump the bags and procede to do the "cleanup pass" mowing the lawn normaly, leaving stripes and bagging the grass and leaves and dumping it all into the truck. Iv'e tried raking a couple times but I don't have enough room in the pickup to haul more than one laws worth of leaves that way. and it wasn't any faster.
  8. greenman

    greenman LawnSite Addict
    Posts: 1,405

    I have done it using a 21" and also using a tarp. The tarp method is alot faster, but it fills the trailer really quick. Using the 21" is too slow for me. If the conditions are right and I can get my 36" back there, I use that too.
  9. KLMlawn

    KLMlawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 443

    I just hope for those of you who either regularly or even on occasion are using a 21" machine, for clean-ups no less, have very tiny back yards or are charging enough to make you independently wealthy, because otherwise I can't see you making a profit.
  10. AGG Lawn Maintenance

    AGG Lawn Maintenance LawnSite Senior Member
    from Elberon
    Posts: 422

    Depending on if the leaves are wet or dry:
    If wet we blow them into piles and tarp them out by the pile. If they are dry we blow them into a big pile and tarp them out. For front open yards one guy will ground blow them off the front yard. The 2nd guy will suck up any left over leaves with the mower. On some lawns we are able to just suck up the leaves off the lawn. In the back yard when we suck up leaves we bring a tarp to dump full bags on. Back in the day when I had my Hustler 400 with the high lift dump we would suck up everything. I still have a Hustler 262. I am thinkng about getting a leaf vac for that. The Hustlers are the best for clean ups hands down.

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