Finishing up first season mowing. have questions.

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Clear-Cut, Nov 8, 2006.

  1. Clear-Cut

    Clear-Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 481

    whats up guys?

    i have been reading around on here for a couple of days now...all i have to say is wow! :clapping:

    heres a little bit about me.
    im a one man band working out of kenilworth, nj (i guess u can call it central nj)

    like it says in the title. i just started mowing this past april and i am learning a lot and loving this job.

    don't laugh...right now i have a regular 22" craftsman mower, a homelite trimmer, and a craftsman hand held blower. now here is the funny part...I WORK OUT OF THE TRUNK OF MY CAR! haha :cool2: thats right...the mower hangs out of the back and luckily my back seats go down so i have enough room to fit the trimmer and rakes and what not in there (ill be working to get a small pick up next summer)

    over the summer i hav accumulated about 13 lawns that i cut weekly and about 10 others that i have done other things for.

    im attending college so im just growing little by little, learning the ins and outs so im shooting for 30 weekly customers next summer.

    now my questions (im a newb so take it easy please)

    after cutting hedges when you have to clean out the scraps or rake the leaves out of the mulch beds...what is the secret to getting all the scraps/leaves out of there without the mulch going all over the place?

    i would like to start doing minor landscaping such as planting and putting mulch down. i figure all i would really need is a cultivator (to soften, aerate, and make it easier to get the weeds out) a rake and some mulch. is this accurate?

    i also want to start fertilizing. how to i go about getting registered (if u even have to in nj) and what do i need to spread (im guessing the plastic scotts spreader wont be good enough)?

    and for future reference
    what is the best brand of equipment (mowers, trimmers, blowers and what not) when it comes to price, durability, and reliability?

    there will be plenty more to come and i really appreciate your help

    please dont bash me. im new and im trying to learn thanks again

    justin
     
  2. nobagger

    nobagger LawnSite Gold Member
    from Pa
    Posts: 3,065

    This is what's it's come to.;) My advise... get hired on with an exsisting reputable company for a year or so and learn some very basic skills. You better learn how to remove weeds and clippings from flower beds before you start nuk'in lawns with chemicals.
     
  3. PMLAWN

    PMLAWN LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,535

    don't laugh---I WORK OUT OF THE TRUNK OF MY CAR! haha

    Sorry but we will:laugh:

    after cutting hedges when you have to clean out the scraps or rake the leaves out of the mulch beds...what is the secret to getting all the scraps/leaves out of there without the mulch going all over the place?

    Keep them out in the first place-- Drop cloth

    i also want to start fertilizing. how to i go about getting registered (if u even have to in nj) and what do i need to spread (im guessing the plastic scotts spreader wont be good enough)?

    Contact your Dept. of Agu.

    and for future reference
    what is the best brand of equipment (mowers, trimmers, blowers and what not) when it comes to price, durability, and reliability?


    What equipment do you need to do YOUR properties?
     
  4. Clear-Cut

    Clear-Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 481

    i hav asked for help...not criticism..thanks

    in reply to the "nuk'in lawns with chemicals" i hav read that you need to take a test...therefore be educated about it in order to obtain a license. i am not trying to just go out there and do things that i dont know how to do. i want to learn. so thanks for nothing
     
  5. Clear-Cut

    Clear-Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 481

    thanks for the info and help. right now with the 22" push mower im doing my lawns in about a half an hour (thats cut trim and blow) which i think is pretty decent. i think i want something with a bigger blade though to make it even faster..maybe something like 28-32" possibly...that might not even fit into the backyards of some of the houses i do but it will help on the front yards

    the trimmer does its job...no complaints. but i would rather hav 3 in one type trimmer that can trimmer/hedge trimmer/edger and whatever else they have out there...and im upgrading to backpack blower next year
     
  6. PMLAWN

    PMLAWN LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,535

    I think you will love a 36" W/B. I like red but most of the commercial stuff out there is good- Demo the different units and get what feels good to you. Check out the Quick line (look up)
    I do have a Combo unit but not as the main tool, Time is all you have to sell and you do not want to spend time changing heads, I would go with seperate trimmer and edger and than get the combo with the hedge trimmer head first and maybe a back up string trimmer. You will still use a handheld hedge trimmer that is shorter than the pole.
    Mower will run between 2500-4500 and the handheld stuff should be total less that 2000. Used truck and trailer and you can be up and running for maybe less than 10 K (check out a Lic. and you need Insurance)
     
  7. Clear-Cut

    Clear-Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 481

    thanks a lot..a lot of help..i will look into the mower and everything..right now time isnt a huge factor because i only plan on having about 30 customers and probably fo 6 lawns a day..so i could afford switching the heads (im not asked to hedges that often anyway) so for now i guess ill just get the trimmer with the hedger attachment and keep the other as back up.

    whats a decent backpack blower? light, reliable, and powerful
     
  8. nobagger

    nobagger LawnSite Gold Member
    from Pa
    Posts: 3,065

    Yes you are "going out there and doing things that you don't know how to do" thats why I said get hired on somewhere for a year so some one can teach you different things. You will learn more working in the field in 6 months vs. a year of asking questions in here, not that this is a bad place to find out info on something but it would help to know what we are talking about. Nothing can take the place of experience my friend!
     
  9. daveintoledo

    daveintoledo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,587

    look until you learn more and grow you are going to be looked at as a sc__b.... but thats ok you have to start somewhere..

    make sure you are licensed in your state and local reguliations and get insurance now... commercial plates and all else that is needed to be a legitimate, and you may have to charge sales tax in your area, not sure...if you are legal, then you are on your way.... LUCK..:)
     
  10. Clear-Cut

    Clear-Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 481

    well put. and it is true "nothing can take the place of experience" although i have promised every customer that i will be continuing the service next year. i dont want to drop them, because i dont want to lose them

    maybe ill hold out on the fertilizing for now. i do know someone in the business im not going to have time to work with him full or part time but maybe he would let me help him out when he is fertilizing or whatever i want to learn..i would do it for no pay..after all i am learning from it and i am willing to put in a couple of hours of learning for a lifetime of experience which will benefit me in the end

    sorry if i sounded like a dick..i just dont take "no" as an answer very well..lol i came to my sense though
     

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