Getting the nitrogen down

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by DFW Area Landscaper, Feb 6, 2005.

  1. DFW Area Landscaper

    DFW Area Landscaper LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 2,116

    I just bought a little 50 gallon spray rig from Lesco for our applications business.

    My old plan consisted of six applications per year.

    Dec: Lesco 0-0-7 with Pre-M and 2-4D
    Feb: Lesco 0-0-7 with Pre-M and 2-4D
    Apr: Lesco 25-2-5 with Pre-M and 2-4D
    Jun: Lesco 28-3-10 with iron and spot treat MSMA & Manage
    Aug: Lesco 28-3-10 with iron and spot treat MSMA & Manage
    Oct: Lesco 25-2-5 with Pre-M and 2-4D

    Now that I have a 50 gallon spray tank, my plan was to add urea to the tank mix for my October and April applications. My real concern here is the April application. If we apply liquid urea in early April, how long will the green-up last? My gut feeling is that the early April app will fade off by May first, leaving the lawn looking less than ideal for four or five weeks. Heck, even the 28-3-10 application in June fades off about three weeks before we do the August application.

    I'm considering contacting all existing customers and explaining that we plan to increase our applications from 6 per year to 7 per year, with an additional application in early May. Or possibly eliminate the December application and move it to May, which would make things a lot harder for us with no increase in revenue. Or does anyone think I'll be fine with a liquid urea app in early April and then no more nitrogen until early June?

    Anyone have any input or suggestions?

    Thanks,
    DFW Area Landscaper
     
  2. cemars

    cemars LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 387

    I wished you had asked before you got your sprayer. At an average 2 gal/k rate, you will only be able to treat 4-5 lawns before needing to refill. Second, urea doesn't work great in a jet aggitated sprayer. It can be done but you will get frustrated trying to keep it from clogging your filters. If you are concerned about the application lasting for more than 2-4 weeks, look into a liquid slow release like Coron, it will last alot longer and mixes easy, no clogging.
     
  3. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,956


    Cemars

    The reason you are clogging filters is your mixing to much Urea per gallon. Raise your gallons per thousands rate and you will solve your clogging problems.

    DFW

    Longevity of 46-0-0 Urea depends Soil Temperature, CEC and infiltration of your soil. Pounds of Actual Nitrogen and Gallons per thousand applied also effect the longevity of urea. Wash it into the ground with a higher gallons per thousand applied and it will last longer. I get about 8 weeks out of a pound per thousand applied at 5 gallon per thousand on Sandy soil.
     
  4. osc

    osc LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 502

    What kind of grass you got down there?
     
  5. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,956


    I believe Both DFW and I have St Augustine for the most part. However DFW has a lot more Bermuda which requires a lot of Nitrogen. BTW I don't use pure Urea as my Nitrogen source. However To be competitive we must use some Urea. It is the Cheapest form of Nitrogen. All that Scotts 29-2-3 is nothing more than Urea. You pay big bucks for it and it is one of the cheapest Fertilizers to make. I buy 46-0-0 for $ 8.50 a 50 lb bag. That 23 pounds of actual Nitrogen for 8.50 or $ 0.37 a pound. Home owners Buy 29-2-3 in 30 lb bags at Walmart Discount store for How much??? 30 lb of 29-2-3 has about 8.7 pounds of actual Nitrogen or about $ 3.22 my cost on Nitrogen. You do the math.
     
  6. cemars

    cemars LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 387

    Fortunately I don't have this problem as all of my tanks are mechanically agitated. I did however hear this complaint on a regular bases during my 6 years at Lesco. And at 5 gal per 1000, a 50 gal tank would only treat 1-2 lawns!
     
  7. DFW Area Landscaper

    DFW Area Landscaper LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 2,116

    A fifty pound bag of urea thrown into the tank and applied at 2 gallons per thousand would be just under 1 pound of nitrogen per thousand square feet.

    Think I'll have problems with clogging if I try to mix in a 50 pound bag of urea? I sure hope not, but I don't know.

    There are lots of reasons why I went with such a wimpy, small sprayer. But it really boils down to the fact that this spray rig only weighs 600 pounds when full. With leaf spring helpers, it can ride in my Nissan Frontier, which is the only crew cab that can be parked in my garage. Were it not for freezing temperatures, I could have bought a 200 gallon paddle driven unit and kept in the back of the F-150. I can get an F-150 in my garage, but I have to have a crew cab as my personal vehicle because of my kids.

    Yes, we'll have to refill this thing every five or six stops. The plan is to bring along a 100' water hose and hook up to the customer's faucet when we run out. If customers start complaining about that, I'll have to make my employee drive all the way to my home to refill. I really doubt most folks will complain. It still ought to be a gazillion times faster than pushing a spreader and refilling a 3.5 gallon backpack at every stop.

    Ric, 98% of the lawns I service are bermuda. Pure clay soils around here. Low nitrogen with bermuda shows a lot worse than with St Augustine.

    Later,
    DFW Area Landscaper
     
  8. DON'T fill from CLIENTS faucet, get it DON'T fill from CLIENTS faucet!!!!!!!!
     
  9. vegomatic40

    vegomatic40 LawnSite Senior Member
    from 6
    Posts: 406

    I'm with Tim on this one. Not sure what Texas' laws are regarding filling on a customers property but suspect that it would be frowned upon, even with some customers willing to let you do it, you still have no back-flow preventer etc.
    As far as the turf fading between app's, you might look at a stabilized release Nitrogen source like Umaxx. I've had good success with it (even at 1/2 lb N/1000 ft..) It's not cheap at $18 -$20/ 50 lb. but nothing good ever comes easy.
     
  10. DUSTYCEDAR

    DUSTYCEDAR LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Posts: 5,137

    if i caught u filling up form my water U WOULD BE GONE
     

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